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New IIMs to replace GD with written test, may use scores of older IIMs for admissions

IIM Ranchi

The new IIMs want to reduce the admissions load on their shoulders by reusing the written test scores evaluated by older IIMs.

IIM Ranchi

Following some of its older brethren, the new Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) started since 2010 will replace the group discussion (GD) stage of their admissions with a written essay test. However, if you have already appeared for the written tests of some of the older IIMs, you will not need to take the written test separately for the new IIMs. Either way, the personal interview will still be taken by the new IIMs.

"Informally, two of the older IIMs have assured me that they will share use their written ability test scores with me," said Prof MJ Xavier, Director of IIM Ranchi on the sidelines of's Indian Management Conclave today.

IIM Ranchi will be in-charge of the common admissions process for the six new IIMs at Ranchi, Rohtak, Raipur, Trichy, Udaipur and Kashipur --- which follows the Common Admission Test (CAT) --- for the 2012 season.

The move to curb GDs follows the initiative of IIM Ahmedabad and others, which had cited the reasons of providing an equal platform for everyone to demonstrate their communication skills --- regardless of differing personality traits --- to end GDs. "For the coming admissions season, IIM Calcutta will be the only IIM conducting GDs," said Prof Xavier.

Accepting the older IIMs' written test scores is more a practical matter than one of principal. "We want to ultimately consider about 10,000 candidates amongst all the six new IIMs. But if any of the older IIMs have already taken the written test for say, 3,000 candidates, then by using those scores the load on us reduces to 7,000," Prof Xavier told PaGaLGuY.

"Although it complicates things for me because I now have to normalize the written test scores between IIMs if required. For example, if the process followed in evaluating the written test in an older IIM is different from ours, I have to find a way to equate both," he explained.

The institute, which has exited the mentorship of IIM Calcutta since this April, is now forging collaborations with nearby institutes to offer courses or exchange students in a bid to establish its differentiation.

"Three IIM Ranchi students are completing a semester at XLRI Jamshedpur and similarly XLRI students are now free to complete a semester in IIM Ranchi," he said. A neuro-management course in collaboration with the Indian Institute of Technology, Patna is also in the works.

"Being located in Ranchi, I don't have the same opportunities as enjoyed by schools in Mumbai or Delhi. So the least I can do is work with the best institutes here to improve IIM Ranchi," he reasoned.

"I have also added soft skill courses on Indian culture and Inner development based on Indian management concepts. I have made yoga and a rural immersion stint compulsory too. I am tinkering around with the curriculum but I am not done to my satisfaction yet. Although we were mentored by IIM Calcutta we don't have to be a carbon copy of that school," he said.

Considerably stricter rules of attendance and conduct on campus are other areas where IIM Ranchi is charting its own territory compared to its mentor school, Prof Xavier added.

  • 27Comments
  • GD is a stupid way of assessing candidates. Everyone puts.... 13 Aug '11.
  • Being located in Ranchi, I dont have the same opportuniti.... 17 Aug '11.
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chaitanya T @chocolateguy 3.7 k
Good move!!!I think GDs are a waste of time.Whatever is tested in a GD can be tested in the interview also.And I also guess there would be a written test included in CAT from the next year onwards...
@xecutive 224
"strict rules of conduct on campus" what does it mean ?
Gaurav Mehta @gdm4u87 2.9 k
u would be better off if you end up being a carbon copy of IIM-C...with the "revolutionary" ideas of the director, IIM-Ranchi would end up fooling itself if it doesn't emulate IIM-C and yes, cancelling GDs is a good last, something sensible on the part of IIMs...
Pallav Bhatt @mech04 2
I don't think its as positive a move as it is sounding to be. GD is far for comprehensive than a written test. For simple reason that there are chances of views and counter views. Written tests take that away. Also a manager is not gonna write letters from one company to another. He'll be involved in a verbal communication with them and even in a company he is gonna "speak out" his views not "write his views"...
Paras Bhatia @ParasBh 1.0 k
@gdm4u87...Every IIM has its own unique identity and Ranchi would be one of them. Copying IIM C is not the only path to excellence for this college or for that matter, any other college.
Priyadarshi Bhattacharya @starvoyager 598
I have seen too many GDs ruined by idiots whose coaching class faculty advise them that whether you have something to say or not, make sure you are among the first people to speak. The moderators do chuck out such people, but they end up screwing the chances of others in the panel as well. Having said that, many companies, especially marketing ones, have GDs as a part of their recruitment process, so maybe the GDs do actually test the kind of skills companies want.
@97166rohit 72
@Pallav Bhatt I think you are underestimating the "written test", there are strategies to write where you consider the views and counter views before coming to conclusion. Its much more than just writing letters, its about how clearly you can think about a logic and put in your thoughts.As a manager, you are supposed to present your views in form of ppt,document,resume etc before you get a chance to speak.Come to IIM and you will understand the dearth of written communication. All the best.
PJ Kaka @sashas 3.3 k
GD is a stupid way of assessing candidates. Everyone puts up a false show, most GDs turn into aggressive riots. Candidates are advised by coaching institutes to be a bit more 'in your face' otherwise you won't get your point across. GDs just promote rudeness - not a trait you want in top level managers.
Saket @instinctivefist 669
Being located in Ranchi, I dont have the same opportunities as enjoyed by schools in Mumbai or Delhi. So the least I can do is work with the best institutes here to improve IIM Ranchi, he reasoned. Straight from the horse's mouth. Still want to run after the IIM tag !!