NEW DELHI: In an encouraging development, close to 10 lakh engineering and medical aspirants used the “National Test Abhyas App” to test their preparedness for JEE (Main) and NEET-UG and data reveal a significant 45% are from semi-urban, rural and under served areas and 37% have no access to private coaching.
The results suggest that while there are concerns over post-Covid stress on digitalisation leaving out a section of students, the use of the App showed that online tools can be enabling as well for a large segment with limited access to expensive private coaching.
Stranded in their homes, candidates spent over 7 lakh hours between May 19 and June 4, taking the free online practice tests offered by the National Testing Agency (NTA), which conducts the competitive entrance exams. The big plus of the tests is that not only the candidates get to know their scores, but are provided a detailed analysis of where they went wrong.
The online practice tests provided a detailed analysis of where students went wrong, how much more time they have taken in each section than advisable and are compared to their peers so that they can work on these areas. The approach can be expected to improve the test-taking ability of these candidates.
With the nationwide lockdown, the campus academic activities of coaching institutes as well as regular schools have been disrupted. The HRD ministry launched the practice test mobile application which came in handy for candidates like Lakhan Singh of Rajasthan. “This app is really helpful for JEE aspirants. And mostly for those students who belong to rural area and whose income is not enough,” he said. The test is not just about answering the questions and getting a score.
“Concepts are cleared with the question. I think no other application can be comparable,” said another test-taker, Joshita J. The app offers a practice test on JEE (Main) and NEETUG every day and a candidate can take as many per choice.
At the end of the test, the candidate gets a score card, the questions where she went wrong and an explainer on why it is wrong. The candidate also gets a hand of time management – how much time for a correct and incorrect answer as compared to others. Based on the first 16 days of data, a total of 9,97,904 candidates have taken the practice tests.
Nearly 60% of these are NEET-UG test-takers. UP and Maharashtra have the maximum number of candidates, 1.3 lakh and 1.1 lakh, respectively. For those who scored 99 percentile and above, for JEE (Main), average time taken for a correct answer is 112 seconds and for NEET-UG, it is 37 seconds.
As per the national average, candidates spent maximum time for the mathematics section (67 minutes), while biology (48 minutes) and chemistry (37 minutes for JEE and 48 for NEET) questions were solved well under an hour.