New Delhi: Concerned over the negative
fallout on students appearing for multiple examinations, the
Prime Minister`s scientific advisor has suggested a single
entrance test for admission to higher education institutes.
C N R Rao, Chairman of the Science Advisory Council to
the Prime Minister (SAC-PM), has suggested that the HRD
Ministry declare higher education as a national mission for
the next decade and designate "capable individuals" to oversee
that changes occur without much delay.
Rao, in a four page document titled "Essential Steps for
Progress in Higher Education: A Check-list", suggests that the
country should also identify 10 higher educational institutes
and provide all support to enable them compete with the best
of the institutes in advanced countries to contribute to
The document, which will be submitted to Prime Minister
Manmohan Singh, strongly recommended "only one national
examination" to assess students eligibility.
He said young "people suffer so much to succeed in these
entrance examinations that in the process they lose excitement
in education itself".
In this regard, he pointed to the practice adopted by USA
in enrolling Indian students based on only the Graduate Record
Examinations (GRE) examination.
The examination system, including the college finals, he
felt, seems to have destroyed creativity in young people.
"When will young people stop taking exams and do
something worthwhile? It is important to relook at the entire
examination system including the system of final examinations,
qualifying examination, selection examination and so on," Rao
He said the present scenario demands highly creative and
innovative people to take up challenges in science and other
subjects and tackle problems related to national and global
"It is therefore essential to see that everything we do
in the education sector promotes creativity," he said.
He also suggested constitution of a task force by the HRD
Ministry to prepare an action oriented document to provide a
roadmap for the higher education sector.
"It is desirable that the document becomes available in
next 12 months. What may also be necessary for the HRD
Ministry is to declare higher education as a national mission
for the next decade," he said.