The Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs), National Institutes of Technology (NITs), and other top Centrally Funded Technical Institutes (CFTIs) are premier educational destinations for students seeking to further their career in the engineering and architecture fields in India. Graduating with a certificate from any of these is a sure shot way to gain a strong and firm foothold in any industry that they will eventually enter, as the training imparted there is of such quality. Graduating from them means one’s reputation will precede them wherever they go; it is also viewed as a status symbol by some people. The entrance exam for these, the national level Joint Entrance Exam (JEE) Main is one of the most hotly contested exams in the country, with lakhs of students each year fighting for a few thousand seats. The exam is conducted in two segments for IITs though: JEE Main and JEE Advanced. The scores from both combined determine the chances of a student gaining a seat in an IIT. A number of criteria are to be fulfilled to gain JEE Main eligibility for the 2020 edition, which are as follows:
- Getting the Application Process Done Right: The National Testing Agency (NTA) now conducts the exam, and it released the notification and the JEE Main application form on the website jeemain.nic.in on Sept. 3. For the January exam (dates: Jan 6-11), the registration period is Sept. 3-Sept. 30, 2019, and it’s Feb 7-Mar 7, 2020 for the April session (dates: Apr 3-9). Students can appear for either or both. Those who’ve applied for the January exam needn’t repeat the entire process for the April one; they can apply with just their Application Number and Password. All the instructions mentioned in the JEE Main application form must be followed for the application be accepted and processed, else it’s liable to be rejected. It is also advisable to have a govt. approved ID of the student, preferably Aadhar, as it’s required to be entered in the application form. As per MHRD’s approval, students from abroad will be admitted under the Direct Admission of Students Abroad (DASA) scheme via JEE Mains, applicable from the 2021-22 academic year.
- Percentile Cut-off Limit: Premier educational institutions like IITs set rather high academic markers when it comes to selecting the kind of students they want entering their classrooms. The student’s 12th std. final percentile score is key to deciding whether or not he/she will have JEE Main eligibility. For the JEE Main 2020, the percentile cut-off has been set at 75%. The overall score that is considered for calculating a student’s percentile must be the sum total of all the scores of all subjects of 12th std. There is provision for direct admission of a student into IITs without having to take the exam, which is that the student must have cleared the 12th final exam within the top 20 percentile of that education board for that year. For SC/ST/PWD candidates, the limit has been set at 65% aggregate.
- Subject Background: As engineering is strictly a technical domain, the student must have a background in the core technical subjects if he/she wishes to apply for JEE. Those going for the BE/B.Tech degree course must mandatorily have passed in Physics and Mathematics in their 12th std. exam, along with either of Chemistry, Biotechnology, Biology, or a Technical Vocational Subject. For the B.Arch. pursuers, the subjects to pass for gaining eligibility are Physics, Mathematics, and Chemistry, with an aggregate of 50% in 5 subjects total. The new B. Planning course demands mandatory Mathematics passing scores. To clear the exam, the student must take the exam in 5 subjects total.
- Age Limits: There are no age limits set for the students intending to appear for the JEE Main exam. There is however a limit on the year of completion of 12th std. For the 2020 JEE Main exam, students having cleared their high school course in the years 2018 and 2019 academic years, along with those appearing for their 12th std. exam or its equivalent in 2020, are eligible. There is a possibility of age limits being set by individual institutes which need to be checked out before applying to them.
- Number of Attempts: In total, a candidate can appear for the JEE 2020 exam for up to 3 years from the first attempt, which would be till JEE Main 2022. The exam is conducted twice a year and a candidate can appear for one or both the exams. The best score out of the two would be considered as final in the latter case, as it will be considered as a single attempt.
- Miscellaneous Criteria: Apart from the ones mentioned above, there are others which will prevent a candidate from being able to write the exam if not followed through. One is that of exam centre choice. The candidate gets to pick 5 centres of their choice during application, and the NTA will assign one of them. This assigned centre is final and can’t be changed, as are the dates and times of the exam. Incorrect information in the application form can be corrected by Oct. 11-17 2019. All information will be printed on the Admit Card. Candidates are supposed to bring their Admit Cards to the exam, without which they won’t be allowed to take it. Unruly behaviour and malpractice attempts will make a candidate ineligible to participate in the exam.