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CCTVs caught CAT students cheating

December 17, 2009 10:50 IST

Some students who took the computer-based Common Admission Test (CAT) this year were caught cheating on camera. They were subsequently asked to leave the examination centre, Prometric, the company which provided the software for the test, admitted for the first time.

Based on the video footage, site reports from the test centre administrators and site supervisors, Prometric will report to the IIMs. "Prometric removed some candidates for cheating while they were taking their test. We are now reviewing test score results and other testing data and the video footage of each exam will also be reviewed to look for other candidates who broke the rules.

Retest likely in January, the number of affected students estimated at 8,000

The students who were not able to take the computer-based Common Admission TestĀ for admission to management institutes due to technical glitches may take a retest in the middle of January 2010. The number of affected students is estimated at 8,000.

"We will only allow those candidates who remain to be tested and all those who, through our review, are found to be genuinely affected by various glitches during their last testing occasion," the Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) said in a statement today.

The CAT committee, which comprised IIM-Ahmedabad director Samir Barua, IIM-Bangalore director Pankaj Chandra and CAT 2009 convener Satish Deodhar, met Union higher education secretary Vibha Puri Das here today.

CAT 2009, marred by technical glitches, will not be scrapped. However, the IIMs will review their contract with Prometric, the firm that conducted the country's first computer-based CAT from November 28 to December 8.

"IIMs have decided to continue with the computer-based test for 2009. We also look forward to continue the CAT through computer-based testing in future. We will review the contract with Prometric," said IIM-A director Barua after today's meeting.

The IIMs will put in place a system to identify all the genuine students who failed to appear in the test and are in the process of setting up the criteria that will be used to objectively select the affected candidates.

Based on data, feedback from students, site and audit reports, the CAT committee said the problems faced by the students, include complaints of premature exit through the Exit/ End button, slowness of computers while reviewing and refreshing questions, rebooting of computers and disruptions, missing graphics and data, and rescheduling-related difficulties, among others.

Nearly 240,000 students had registered for the test for admission into IIMs and a few other B-schools, of which almost 216,000 have completed the test so far. Around 24,000 had not come when the test began.

"It is indeed our regret that a number of candidates faced difficulties during this test window and the execution of the exam has not been flawless," said CAT convenor Satish Deodhar.

Archana M Prasanna
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