Engineering

Engineering

IIT-B dept tells recruiters to go easy on students

PUBLISH DATE 10th September 2018

The computer science and engineering (CSE) department at IIT-Bombay has written to recruiters, mainly from the IT sector, seeking to streamline the process of placement talks and tests before the final interviews in December.

For at least three months, placement activities take up substantial time for final year students, affecting their teaching and research, say professors.

In the letter, the department has highlighted the fact that the number of firms primarily interested in CSE graduates is significant. “Students end up taking a large number of tests. Even the toppers, who would normally get through their first choice, appear in multiple tests... It is not unusual for students to attend 40 talks and tests which amount to 120 hours of time. Due to this overload, research output and overall academic performance of students during the semester is seriously affected,” stated the letter.

Department head Uday Khedkar told TOI, “It is inappropriate to tell students to not take the placement tests. Students come to IIT-B because the placements are good and we are happy that there are many opportunities for our students. All we seek is streamlining the process and making the schedule more predictable. Ideally, companies can rely on students’ scores in their coursework.”

If the schedules are known to the department in advance, then teachers can work around it, said Khedkar.

“The number of tests students take across departments, not just CSE, is stressful. The placement cell does give us good training on how to approach these tests, but the numbers does make the process hectic,” said a former student who graduated from the CSE department this year.

The IITs started discussing this problem a few years ago, but a permanent solution eluded them. Khedkar said it is difficult to arrive at a solution. “Ideally no placement activities should be held before December 1, but it is a decision all IITs have to take together,” he added.

Professor Kaustubha Mohanty, ex-convenor of All-India Placement Committee for IITs, however, said, “The issue about changing placement schedule has been discussed several times in the AIPC, but most recruiters are software-based and their vacancies arise only post August. They cannot hire during summer. Campuses are also busy with summer internships then. What is required is more discipline in academics and research from students to ensure both activities are balanced,” said Mohanty.

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