Online CAT has fewer takers for earlier slots

Posted on the September 10th, 2009 under CAT by rishir

This was surely not the race for the top slot. Thousands of B-School aspirants who on Wednesday registered themselves on the first day for the coveted Common Admission Test (CAT) 2009, set to go online from this year, avoided taking the initial slots.

The online test gives options to students to choose the date and venue for the entrance exam that grants admissions to the IIMs and other 150 affiliated B-Schools in the country. The registration will be open till October 1 for the test that will be held across 32 centres over 10 days starting November 28. Last year, 2.7 lakh candidates appeared for the test, a number which is likely to shoot up this time.
Candidates who had to acquire a bank voucher before applying on the CAT site, were hesitant in choosing the first slots, to get feedback about the question patters from others who would take the earlier slots. With the exam being spread over 10 days, experts feel, the number of proxy candidates too would go up significantly this time. There is a likelihood of candidates sending in their friends to appear for the exam during the early slots and know the trend before taking the test themselves.

The first day of online registration led to confusion among the candidates who were unsure of a successful registration. Unlike ISB, where a candidate can revisit his online registration form by logging in and making changes until the last day of form submission, CAT registration is a one-time process and the acceptance notice is generated after 48 hours of form submission.

“Candidates are choosy about their test venue and time slot. So there was some rush on the first day of registration process that is expected to continue for some more days,’’ said Shiva Kumar, director, Career Launcher, a CAT training institute. “Few candidates want to appear on the first day as they want to wait and watch. In fact, several candidates who have applied for the first day slot are proxy candidates. They will provide feedback on the new question pattern,’’ said Sameer Rai, regional director (Gujarat) PT Education said.

Ajay Arora, director, Time Bangalore, said there was rush at the branches of Axis Bank that is disbursing vouchers for registration, especially among working professionals who want to take the test on Saturdays and Sundays. “The first day saw rush of candidates, among working professionals who have a more defined choice of venue and time,’’ he said.

Several candidates who missed out on certain sections while registering, rushed for re-registering, which amounted to a loss of Rs 1,400, the voucher price. “A candidate from our coaching centre forgot to fill his HSC marks in the form and was not sure if his form would be accepted. So, without waiting for the response after two days, he rushed to register again.

On the face of it, his form was accepted and he even got his admit card. However, he registered himself again to avoid rejection,’’ Mr Shiva Kumar added. Last year, as many as 7,637 applications was rejected by the CAT committee as they were not filled in properly. “There were confusions regarding registration instruction among the candidates, especially those on eligibility criteria,’’ said Hitesh Devalia of Endevor Coaching.

Source: Economic Times

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