Increased MHT-CET difficulty is actually a blessing in disguise

PUBLISH DATE 22nd August 2017

With the recent announce ment that the admission in engineering colleges of Maharashtra will happen through the newer MHT-CET, that shall be on a par with the JEE Main in terms of the difficulty level, students should now completely modify their prepa ration methodology .

C o m p a re d t o CET, the JEE-Main has thinkingbased questions and tests students on their conceptual knowledge of the subject. Though students attempting CET can still avoid tough descriptive questions, they need to definitely understand the concepts in detail and raise their preparation up to the JEE-Main difficulty level.

This, in fact, is a blessing in disguise and will help students go beyond rote learning and superficial preparation methods and will help them become capable engineers.

Experts believe that the real purpose of education should be to enhance one's intelligence and receptivity by delving into the subject rather than studying with an intention of cracking an examination. So, for good students, this announcement would not make much of a difference. Conceptually sound, they were always able to finetune their final preparation as per the exams and were doing well in all examinations such as JEE, CET and Boards.

The CET paper pattern is also expected to undergo some changes to bring it on a par with the JEEMain difficulty . The CET was about speed where in the first 90 minutes, students had to solve 50 questions.In the other 90 minutes, the challenge was 50 questions of mathemat ics carrying two marks each. There was no negative marking. But JEE has tougher questions and a student gets two minutes per question on an average. It has negative marking.

Though I personally believe that like some other states (Gujarat & MP), Maharashtra should also select students through JEE-Main for the state colleges. But even increasing the difficulty level of CET is a welcome step. For Pune university colleges, it is a clear observation that students who get selected through 15% JEE-Main quota fare better than the ones who get through CET, which proves the quality of intake through JEE-Main. With this, the quality of students in state colleges shall definitely improve and it will boost standards of engineering education.

With just a few months remaining for the students appearing for the Class XII examinations, they still can work on concepts and should not panic. They should appreciate the change and gear up accordingly . The writer is an IITB alumnus and director of Bakliwal Tutorials, which produced All India Rank 2 in the JEE Advanced 2017 results. As many as 192 BT students cleared the examination.


For the past two years, the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) has been contemplating a single national entrance test for engineering from 2018. However, some states, including Rajasthan, backed out of the single entrance test. Maharashtra also decided to conduct its own entrance for engineering admissions. As entrance exams to two of the most sought after professional courses -medical and engineering (joint entrance exam) -are based on National Council of Educational Research and Training textbooks, the Maharashtra government also decided to increase difficulty level and bring it on par with the national entrance. In a recent government notification, it was announced that MH-CET for engineering and pharmacy courses will have to be brought on par with JEE in terms of the level of difficulty, paper pattern as well as quality of tests.It also said that the syllabus for MH-CET, 2018-19 onwards, would be based on the combined syllabus of classes XI and XII like JEE, instead of only class XII which has been the norm for CET.

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