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Explained: What is the Common Entrance Test Maharashtra has announced for Class XI admissions?

The Maharashtra school education department has announced an optional Common Entrance Test for admissions to Class XI to ensure uniformity and to give equal opportunity to all students. How will it be conducted?

The CET is being conducted for students of all boards (Express Photo: Abhishek Saha, Representational)

Since board exams for Class X have been cancelled across boards and final results are being evaluated through internal assessments done by schools, the Maharashtra school education department has announced an optional Common Entrance Test (CET) for admissions to Class XI to ensure uniformity and to give equal opportunity to all students.

Until last year, admissions to first year junior college (FYJC) took place based on Class X marks except in six areas — Mumbai Metropolitan Region, Pune and Pimpri Chinchwad municipal corporation, municipal corporation areas of Nagpur, Nashik, Aurangabad and Amravati — where a centralised online admission process was conducted based on Class X merit and student’s college preference.

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What is CET for Class XI and how will it be conducted?

The Maharashtra school education department will hold the CET for admissions to FYJC seats during the last week of July or first week of August. It will be held offline and students need to go to designated exam centres to appear for the test. It will be a 100 marks multiple choice question format exam and its duration would be two hours. It will be an objective, multiple-choice exam based on the Class X, SSC syllabus. The Optical Mark Recognition (OMR) based question paper will have questions from four subjects i.e. English, Mathematics, Science, Social Sciences subjects, with each subject carrying 25 per cent weightage of marks. A six-member committee has been formed under the chairmanship of Maharashtra education commissioner Vishal Solanki to finalise the dates and further details of the entrance exam.

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The MSBSHSE or Maharashtra State Council of Examination will conduct the exam under the supervision of the Maharashtra education commissioner. The list of exam centres will be displayed on the website. There will be no fees for CET for state board students as they have already paid exam fees during registration for the SSC exams, which were later cancelled.

The CET is optional, it is not mandatory for students of any board to take the exam.

What is the advantage of taking the CET?

Class XI admissions across Maharashtra in junior colleges affiliated to the state education board will take place after CET is conducted. Students who have taken the CET will be given priority in admissions in all the junior colleges based on merit in the CET. The FYJC admissions would take place in phases, in the first phase admissions who have appeared for CET, irrespective of board, will get admissions as per merit.


Post their admissions, students who had not opted for CET will be given admissions based on Class X merit. Every year, there is a race amongst students for seats at the top rated junior colleges, which might be occupied this year after the first phase of admissions for CET takers is done.

What about non-SSC board students?

The CET is being conducted for students of all boards, i.e. state boards, CBSE, ICSE, IB and any other boards, whose students wish to study in junior colleges affiliated to the Maharashtra State Board of Secondary and Higher Secondary Education. The syllabus would remain the same for them, i.e., Class X, SSC syllabus which they would have to follow to write the test. While SSC students don’t have to pay any fees for the exam, students from other boards will have to pay the entrance exam fee.

Non-state board students have another option for Class XI – to continue studying in schools and junior colleges affiliated to their board. Many CBSE, ICSE, IB schools have already started their admission process while some have even completed it and will soon begin classes. High schools of other boards have simply promoted their own Class X students to the next class or conducted entrance tests and interviews at school level to fill up seats.

First published on: 26-06-2021 at 12:25:32 pm
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