Will NEET-II be tougher than NEET-I?

The All India Pre-Medical/ Pre-Dental Entrance Examination (AIPMT) was conducted on 1st May, 2016 and it is considered as Phase-I of NEET 2016. We will call it NEET-I (National Eligibility Cum Entrance Test Phase I). Several candidates did not appear for the NEET-I and were only preparing for their state level entrance examinations and entrance examinations conducted by private medical colleges.

Subsequently Hon'ble Supremen Court of India directed that NEET should be the only entrance examination to be used for admission to MBBS/ BDS courses in all government and private medical colleges. As this was a sudden development, CBSE proposed a second phase of the NEET exam for the current year (2016) to give an opportunity to all the candidates to appear in NEET. This exam is proposed to be conducted on July 24, 2016. We will call this as NEET-II (National Eligibility Cum Entrance Test Phase II).

However, an Ordinance by the Central Government overruled the Supreme Court Judgment partially. The Ordinance gave an exception for the year 2016 for the State Governments to decide the mode of admission for 85% state quota in government colleges. Further to this Ordinance, few State Governments like Delhi decided to continue the use of NEET scores as the criteria for admission. Some states like Karnataka proceeded with their state level entrance exams. Tamil Nadu used the board exam marks as the basis for admission.

Which colleges are covered under NEET 2016?

With all the above developments, NEET 2016 is applicable for admissions to the following:
  1. All India Quota Seats (15% seats in all government medical colleges, excluding seven AIIMS Institutions and two JIPMER Institutions).
  2. State Government Quota Seats where the State Government concerned so opts.
  3. Private/Management/ NRI Quota Seats in all Private Medical/ Dental Colleges or any Private/ Deemed University

Who can appear for NEET-II?

As per the directives of the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India dated 09 May 2016, the following three categories of candidates can appear for NEET-II examination:
  1. Left out candidates who could not register in AIPMT-2016/ NEET-I.
  2. Candidates who were registered in AIPMT-2016/ NEET-I but could not appear in NEET-I.
  3. Candidates who were registered in AIPMT-2016/ NEET-I and had appeared but have apprehension that they had not prepared well. These candidates can appear in NEET-II subject to submission of an undertaking to give up their candidature for NEET-I

Will NEET-II be tougher than NEET-I?

Will NEET-II be tougher than NEET-I?

Will NEET-II be easier than NEET-I? Will NEET-II be tougher than NEET-I? Is NEET-II going to be based on state syllabus? Will NEET-II set easier questions as there will be several state board students appearing for the NEET-II exam? These are some of the frequently asked questions that cause sleepless nights to thousands of students and anxious parents.

In our opinion, we believe that the intention of CBSE would be to have both exams at an equal level of difficulty. It is possible to have a different level of perceived difficulty, as the two phases are conducted under completely different scenarios. NEET-I was conducted when the students were still fresh from their board exams. NEET-II is being conducted when most of the students are tired and would like to quickly get the luggage off their back. The other argument was that NEET-II students had 3 months preparation time exclusively for the entrance examination.

The only way to remove the level of difficulty from the equation is to normalize the scores from the two different examinations. CBSE has not yet indicated any normalization procedure for the two examinations, which are conducted three months apart. However, the two medical entrance examinations conducted this year by AIIMS and JIPMER used procedures to normalize the scores achieved in the morning and afternoon sessions.

CBSE should come out with a normalization procedure to even out the difficulty level, if any, between the two phases. In our opinion, it would be unfair to compare the raw scores of NEET I and NEET II. CBSE should use percentile scores similar to AIIMS/ JIPMER and combine the two results. This has proved to be a good system and would remove any bias of difficulty from the final rankings.