Wednesday, March 13, 2013

AIIMS Entrance Online vs Offline: Pros & Cons

AIIMS has introduced CBT (Computer based test) along with the classic pen and paper mode of entrance exam from the session May 2013. With this many students are confused between which one to choose.
AcrossPG team has come up with these pros and cons of both the systems to help the students especially the freshers who have never faced CBT before, make their decision.
First of all there is no major difference between the two systems and everyone should choose the one in which he/she is comfortable. We do not advice to choose any one system over the other. Our aim is to provide help to students in making a better informed decision.

Computer Based Test Mode.

Q: What is it?
Ans: For those who are not familiar with this type of exam, it is a Mode in which the questions are presented to the students on a computer and students have to mark the responses on the computer itself in the stipulated time. It is also called as ‘Online’ system, but it’s a kind of misnomer because the exam is not posted on internet and the students cannot take exam at their home sitting on their computer using internet. The exams are conducted on specific centers and on the PC systems of the centers which are not at all connected to internet (mainly for security reasons).

Presuming AIIMS will use the same system as used by NBE or Prometric for conducting DNB and NEET:

Pros of CBT:

  • Its easy to manage the questions on CBT, the questions not attempted in first round (or if one has any confusion) can be marked to review later easily which is not possible on conventional method.
  • The Online mode saves your time. The correct answers can be marked by a click and it saves the marking time which is to be done on the OMR sheets if the Offline mode is chosen.
  • Through this mode, the correct answers marked can be changed later, whereas this option is not available in the Offline mode. This means you are safe from Unintentional wrong marking of answers.
  • All candidates can practice for Online exam beforehand with the Online Practice Sheets.

 Cons of CBT:

As we all know that, this is the first time that the AIIMS is conducting exam in CBT mode.  So the efficiency of this mode of examination is not known. It may be a risk to choose it.
·         As it is the first time, there might be some unexpected problems we never know. There might occur a technical issue on the computer system at some centers.
  • The Proper training is also not provided to the candidates for Online approach. This may raise problem for the rural candidates.
  • In the Offline mode, students can see all the questions at a time and they can choose to answer first. Whereas, in Online, the questions appear one – by – one.

Pros of Conventional Pen and Paper method.

  •          Its well tested method.
  •          Most of the students have prior exposure to this system via test series and PMT level exams.
  •          For some its simply easy this way.

Cons of Conventional method:

  •          Its takes more time to fill OMR.
  •          Wrongly marked answers cannot be corrected.
  •          There may occur mistake in filling the answer key due to jumping of one column, for example if someone fill answer of Q10 in column of Q11 by mistake and do not realize the mistake it may spoil all the answers marked after that.

Here are some major Pros and Cons of both the systems. Now its upto you which one suits best for you. We hope that this article help you in making a better decision and relieve some of your confusion.

If you have any more of the Pros and Cons of the systems which we have left out please tell everyone by replying to this post.



AcrossPG is a online portal for Doctors and medical students. Specilly for medicos preparing for PG entrance exams.