Entrance Exams

Entrance Exams

Test will be designed to do away with rote learning

PUBLISH DATE 18th July 2018

The agency will annually test around 1.5 crore candidates. NTA officials said the test will be designed in a way that rote learning and intensive private coaching are not of much help to candidates unless she is thorough with the syllabus. “There will be distractors (multiple choice questions) designed to fox you. And with millions of questions (items) to be prepared instead of a couple of question papers for a particular test, you will be at the mercy of the software’s algorithm which will pick up items at random for your test at a particular date, based on the set difficultylevel,” an official said.

Sources said these computer-based tests will have several advantages. Candidates will be able to revisit questions later or keep some for review once the easier ones are done. In case the exam date doesn’t suit a candidate, she will be free to choose another date (from a given set). If the candidate is unhappy with her score, she can take the exam again after three months.

“It is going to be driven by technology. Artificial intelligence tools will be used to setting the questions and preparing the key for the correct answers ,” an HRD ministry official said.

NTA is undertaking psychometric analysis of the previous years’ tests. “There are three things we are analysing from previous papers. We are seeing how each question has fared to determine its level of difficulty. Second, we are looking is how the distractors (the multiple choices for a question) have functioned. These distractors should be able to properly distract the person, so that only the ones who know the subject are able to answer correctly,” said a psychometric expert analysing the JEE main data at NTA. “The third we are looking at is how well the entire question paper has functioned. We are analysing whether these were reliable tests or not,” the expert added.

According to the HRD official, “A number of new things are going to be tried out, like psychometric analysis of data, psychometric analysis to train the item writers, web-based test writing with AI technology so that there are no errors in the question and answer keys, as well as computer adaptive testing.”

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