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JAM Engineering Admissions: A Review June 9, 2008

Posted by Karan in General.
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An year ago, I came across this survey in the JAM site asking engineering students to fill a form about their college. Though I ruled it out as another of those questionnaires out of which results never come, I could not resist filling it up for the heck of my college, IIIT Hyderabad. Last week, the book finally released. And I must say, the book’s not disappointed me at all… In fact, it’s one extremely informative book. Unlike the dumbass India Today ratings, a lot of effort seems to have been put into this review. And to say the least, the results show! So, cheers Rashmi and her team at JAM!

I’ll probably list out the positive and negative points of the book. Positive first.
• There are no rankings, just the division of colleges into categories- A++, A+ and so on till C-. This’ll probably ensure that friction levels are kept to a minimum.
• The division by itself. In most cases, a lot of research seems to have gone into the entire thing. Besides, taking in inputs from engineering students at a popular youth site was a good idea. Though I resent IIIT Hyderabad being put in the A+ category (I think we deserve an A++), I’m still happy with most of the ratings.
• The sheer size of the database– the book manages to cover more than 500 colleges! None of your other surveys have covered this number till date. Who would have thought that your GITAM, CBIT etc would be covered in an engineering survey. The number makes the book useful not just for budding IITians but also those who’re looking at other national and state level colleges.
• The articles in the magazine cover a plethora of topics ranging from the types of engineering, life at engineering colleges, life after graduation etc. For all those who wanted to get into an engineering college but didn’t know why, or those who have no idea of what BE and B.Tech are all about, this is a perfect place to start off. Some of the articles like the one on birthday bumps and treats, the one on placements by Bansal herself, and the one on donation are brilliant! They accurately and vividly describe the actual situation. There are other very good sections like the Editors’ pick, way of living and all.
• The book does a good job of describing some of the major branches in detail. It gives you a fair idea of where your aptitude lies.

However, being a first time work, the book does have some chinks in the armour, though not major ones.
• I can’t say much about other states, but for me, as an Andhraite, there was an error too many. For instance, the spelling of GITAM is messed up with. There are hardly any articles on colleges in Andhra. The book says that admission into NIT-W is still through EAMCET (as well as AIEEE), which is far from the truth.
• Some of the rankings seemed a little unfair. Indore’s GSITS was put at A+ whereas NIT Bhopal is at A. Even considering the advice (given in the book) that national colleges (like NIT Bhopal) be put at one level higher (A+ in this case) while comparing with local colleges, the ranking seems unjustified. The fact of the matter is NIT Bhopal is quite ahead of GSITS.
• The unofficial prospectus gets repetitive after some time. Engineering life is more or less the same across the country, with some variations with place, type of college etc. Considering the above fact, a few articles in this section can easily be removed.
• Articles on topics like reservation, ragging, college fests etc could have been covered.

All in all, the hiccups are far and few in between. The overall feeling of reading the book is pretty positive. I hope it replaces India Today as the primary engineering survey in India. Hats off to JAM for coming up with such a wonderful and useful book. I’ll call it a must have for all engineering aspirants.

Roger that. June 7, 2008

Posted by Karan in General.
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Go Roger Federer. Have placed 50 bucks on you for kicking Nadal’s ass 🙂