Mumbai: Cracking the gruelling Joint Entrance Exam is not enough, it seems for engineering aspirants who head to the Indian Institute of Technology- Bombay will now have to take a test in English proficiency even before first semester classes begin. But that’s not all. Those who fail to clear the test will have to undergo a fulltime, semester-long bridge course. This, in turn, will push back their dreams of graduating from the tech school by six months.
This is the first time that an IIT will test students’ knowledge of English on the lines of American and European universities. “It has been our experience that some JEE entrants have such a severe deficiency in English that their academic performance suffers in the first semester. This affects their confidence during their subsequent academic career at the institute,” said an official communication.
Officials at IIT-B said the test would be elementary in nature andstudentswere not requiredto take additional coaching for it. Students who score less than 20% in the test and have a total JEE score of less than or equal to 150 will have to undergo the bridge course. “We will put them through an intensive preparatory course in English, physics, chemistry and maths,” said an IIT-B faculty member.
It is only after the end of this six-month course that regular engineering classes will begin for them. So, while one set of students will enter the last leg of their first year, another batch will start its engineering lectures only after the bridge course. “Such students will not be allowed to simultaneously register for advanced courses in physics, chemistry or mathematics until they pass the bridge course,” said the note.