NEET-UG: NTA gives clarity on exam and marking pattern
Get authentic, real-time news that helps you fight COVID-19 better.
Install PlexusMD App for doctors. It's free.
Nearly two weeks after the National Testing Agency (NTA) announced changes to the paper pattern for the upcoming National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET-UG), the authority clarified doubts of several candidates regarding the marking pattern.

“The test pattern of NEET-UG has been modified, and in every subject students will attempt 35 questions mandatorily and of the remaining 15, one should attempt only 10 questions. It is important that the candidates do not attempt more than 10 questions because only the first 10 attempted questions will be considered for evaluation/marking,” said the response shared by the official NTA email. This is the first time since its inception that the exam pattern for NEET-UG has been changed.

Until 2020, the NEET-UG paper pattern consisted of 180 objective-type questions from physics, chemistry and biology (botany and zoology) that had to be answered on a specially designed sheet using a ballpoint pen only. Each correct answer gave students four marks and each wrong answer deducted one mark. According to NTA, the new paper pattern will comprise of two sections under each subject.

Section A will consist of 35 questions which students have to attempt compulsorily, and section B will consist of 15 questions from which the candidate can choose to attempt any 10 questions. “As students have to choose and attempt only 10 out of the 15 questions, the utilisation of time will remain the same, thus clarifying that the total time given for the exam remains the same this year as well (sic),” stated NTA response.

“We are glad that NTA has reverted to our emails and specified the marking scheme, clearing all doubts in the minds of the aspirants. Many were confused about the change in paper pattern and this response from NTA has given much required relief to more than 1.5 million NEET aspirants,” said Ruiee Kapoor, parent and activist.

In a statement released earlier this month, NTA clarified that the changes were introduced keeping in mind the reduction of syllabus by various school education boards for their Class 12 students in 2020-21, considering the loss of academic time due to Covid-19. “To rationalise the decision of reduction in the syllabus by various school education boards, NTA has taken the decision to provide choice in Section “B” for each of the four subjects,” clarified NTA.