CUET 2022: Students complained about last-minute changes in exam centres, long commutes, and lengthy question papers.

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In the midst of complaints from stressed-out students about last-minute exam centre changes, long commutes, and lengthy question papers, the first edition of the CUET-UG examination, a significant education sector reform that will change the admissions process in central universities, began on Friday.

The Universal University Entrance Test (CUET), the common entry point for undergraduate admissions in all central universities, has surpassed JEE-average Main’s registration of nine lakh candidates to become the second-largest entrance exam in the nation with 14.9 lakh registrations. With an average of 18 lakh registrations, NEET-UG is India’s largest entrance examination. “We are prepared to begin the first CUET at 9:00 am. Greetings to all the students writing the CUET “UGC chairman Jagadesh Kumar tweeted to reassure students who were feeling anxious due to the delayed distribution of their admit cards and the busy exam schedule.

Their difficulties were made worse by a last-minute change in testing location, which caused many of them to miss their test. As a result, officials assured them that they would have another chance in the CUET’s second phase in August. Technical difficulties forced the cancellation of the exam at two locations in New Jalpaiguri, West Bengal, and Pathankot, Punjab. Additionally, they will be given a second chance to fulfil their dream of attending a major university. “The second round of the examination will now let the over 190 candidates who were scheduled to attend at the two centres. Candidates who were unable to appear owing to changes in exam locations will also have a second chance at other centres “a senior representative of the National Testing Agency (NTA), which administers the test.

Some test-takers who took the exam in the morning session in the nation’s capital said the questions weren’t very challenging, but the papers were a little long. Anchal, though, was a depressed and morose 18-year-old. She claimed to have been assigned a centre in Dwarka while standing outside the testing facility on the tree-lined North Campus, which is home to renowned colleges like St. Stephen’s College, Shri Ram College of Commerce, Hindu College, and Miranda House. But when she arrived, she was turned away.”My centre has changed, I was notified. I was in a panic and unsure of what to do. We travelled for two hours before arriving at the North Campus, when we were informed that the window of time for entering the exam centre had expired “She uttered with a tearful sigh. When asked if she had been made aware of the centre shift beforehand, Aanchal responded, “Only after learning that this is not my centre did I check my mail. If I had known the centre would alter, I would have examined it sooner.”

Ritika experienced the same outcome. She was advised that her new examination location was on the North Campus when she arrived at the Netaji Subhas University of Technology, contrary to what was stated on her admission card. “I hurried to North Campus, but admittance was denied because the time had passed. This is wrong; our future depends on it, remarked the man, who was clearly exhausted from racing around. Some candidates who travelled from remote areas of the capital city reported that it took them about 1.5 hours to reach the centre. “I believe there may have been better arrangements. A few days before to the exam, the admission card may have been made available, and the testing location ought to be closer to the residences of the students.

“The temperature is really high. The area where I live has no metro connectivity. So, we took an auto to the bus stop, where we got on the bus. I was drenched in sweat by the time I arrived at the testing location, “Kamya recounted. There were lengthy lines of candidates outside the testing locations. Many were cramming for the exam with their books in hand, especially at well-known central universities like Delhi University where the Class 12 score was the crucial element. This exam will change how undergraduate admissions are handled in the nation. There have been claims that students from state boards who received favourable results were admitted to reputable colleges without meeting the necessary qualifications.

There will be two stages of the CUET. Phase 1 will take place in July, followed by Phase 2 in August. NEET (UG) – 2022, which will be held on July 17 for admissions to MBBS and BDS institutes, has assigned Phase 2 of the CUET exam to candidates who have chosen Physics, Chemistry, or Biology. The head of the University Grants Commission had stated in March that the admission to 45 central universities, which can set their minimum eligibility requirements, will be based on CUET scores rather than Class 12 marks.

According to Kumar, the new approach will not prejudice state board students, and the exam will not encourage the culture of coaching. For the academic session 2022–2023, 44 central universities, 12 state universities, 11 deemed universities, and 19 private universities have submitted applications to participate in the first edition of CUET–UG. On Wednesday, the UGC instructed colleges to set deadlines for undergraduate course admissions only after the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) released the results of the Class 12 examination. The UGC stated that because several universities have already begun the admissions process, CBSE pupils will be denied seats in these institutions.

Mayank Tewari

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