'XAT is like Wimbledon of MBA entrance exams, pencil-paper gives the most accurate scores '
It is no surprise that XAT 2016 continues to remain a pen paper exam when the academic examinations globally have gone online. Besides, it is also far easier to conduct an online exam than a conventional pencil-paper one.
XLRI's Dr Munish Thakur who is in charge of XAT 2016 admitted to PaGaLGuY that it would be far more convenient and easier to hold an online version of the exam but after much debate the older version triumphed. "We gave it a thought for long but ultimately the debate boiled down to choosing between giving "accurate scores" and "convenience". Between the two, we decided in the favor of the first choice," Dr Thakur said.
XLRI officials reasoned that, if the more favourite version of pencil paper is held on to, the accuracy of the scores could be counted on. The CAT entrance exam bring with it a host of problems - primary among them normalisation, a least understood term. "XAT is the most fair MBA examination to check a candidate's ability on a particular day. When there are so many test takers (like in India), it is critical to assess them as fairly as possible. We do not see any major advantage of online testing," Dr Thakur added.
The XAT in-charge further quipped: "XAT is like Wimbledon of MBA entrance examinations."
Of course, there will be changes in XAT 2016 but those are for other reasons. The aptitude test sees an increase of a half hour in duration. "That is being done to help students attempt more questions. Once students attempt more questions, it improves our confidence in differentiating an excellent candidate from a good candidate," informed Dr Thakur.
To compensate, the number of questions may decrease by 5-8.
While XLRI is expecting registrations of 85,000 to 100,000 it is yet to be seen the final number considering the decline in interest in MBA globally.
Some more changes expected this year is the introduction of negative marking for unattempted questions.