InfoEdge (India) Ltd.’s Shiksha.com, a leading online platform for college selection in India, has rolled out its annual Engineering Admission Outlook Report 2021. The students can look for the most preferred entrance examinations, factors to keep in mind when deciding on their preferred colleges, among others.
Engineering, by far, is one of the most coveted higher education streams among the Indian youth. Lakhs of students in India sit for Engineering entrances every year after their Higher Secondary board exams, irrespective of which educational board they belong to. The report reveals that a majority (over 50%) Engineering aspirants appear for more than two entrance exams for a higher success probability. While the average count of Engineering entrance exams dropped by 10% in 2020 in North and Central India, it remained unaltered in East and West India. Contrary to previous years, there has been a surge in adoption and preference for Engineering entrance exams, like KIITEE and MET, among young applicants. Overall preference for MET by Manipal University and KIITEE by Kalinga University increased by up to 20% in 2020 when compared to 2019.
When it comes to the choice of college location, a large share of the students (42% on average) prefers metro cities, like Delhi, Bengaluru, Mumbai, and large cities in their home states. However, a considerable mass of students from East (32%) and Central India (31%) are happy to join a college anywhere in India provided their requirements are met.
One of the most interesting revelations of the Shiksha.com report is that top metro cities, such as Delhi, Bengaluru, Chennai, and Hyderabad, are now losing to Tier-II cities like Pune, Nagpur, Surat, and Ahmedabad, among students from West India to study Engineering in. Those from the East have portrayed a rising positive sentiment for cities like Mumbai, Delhi, and Hyderabad in 2020 as opposed to their regular preference for Engineering institutions located in south of India. While for students from Central India, Indore has emerged as the new hub to study Engineering, replacing Bhopal. Bengaluru, Mumbai, and Pune, the usual sweet spots for aspirants from Central India witnessed a negative lift. Students from South India continue to prefer studying in colleges in their region, showcasing a positive attitude towards colleges located in Coimbatore and Mumbai. For students in North India, Delhi-NCR continues to be the top choice for pursuing Engineering.
Vivek Jain, Chief Business Officer, Shiksha.com said, “Engineering as a stream is one of the most sought-after career choices among young Indian students. The diversity of specialisation, growing demand for evolved Engineering roles, and availability of quality institutions, together have made it retain its popularity among students. The fact that students are willing to move across cities to gain the best of education is a positive note that our country is treading towards the right path when it comes to higher education.”
The Engineering Outlook Report 2021 also revealed that student reviews, placement matrices, and financial aids accounted for the key decision-making elements when it came to researching and choosing Engineering colleges in 2020, as opposed to the earlier trend of choosing colleges on the basis of mere rankings. This was closely followed by a stronger need of the right programmes and industrial training/internship opportunities offered by the institutions. Student ambassadors, interactive sessions by the institutions and faculty, and trained counsellors surfaced as the most trusted points of contact for doubt resolutions among aspirants.
Similar to the trend in 2019, Computer Science Engineering (CSE), Electronics and Communications Engineering (ECE), and Information Technology continued to top the list of preferred specialisations among Engineering aspirants in 2020. However, despite the low numbers, alternative Engineering specialisations are expected to hold a promising future in the imminent years. The usual Mechanical and Civil Engineering specialisations lost their places to Electrical and IT.
The year 2020 reflected a growing adoption and switching to online sources of information ranging from search engines like Google to online college selection and review portals like Shiksha.com and others as opposed to traditional sources. Over 80% of students and parents researching for Engineering colleges resorted to search engines and college websites, while over 64% preferred college listing/ranking sites across the country.
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