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Intensive NEET coaching might be working in favour of boys

Intensive NEET coaching might be working in favour of boys Published Date : 31 Jul 2018
MUMBAI: For the past many years, girls in Maharashtra used to outnumber boys in making the cut to join medical schools. Neither the intensity nor the length of the course deterred these young, determined women. This year though, the trend has reversed – more boys will sign up for MBBS in colleges across the state. Directorate of medical education and research data shows that 1,448 young men will make it to public medical schools against 1,123 young men in 2018. Compare theses to last year’s figures of 1,182 boys and 1,488 girls.
Experts attribute the turnaround to NEET, the all-India exam that involves a more rigorous preparation than the earlier MH-CET. Fewer families let girls travel away from home and sign up at coaching hubs in Hyderabad and Kota for intensive NEET coaching.
Some girls fo not get the push required for the two-year preparation after Class X. As NEET is based on NCERT curriculum, unlike the state’s CET, intensive coaching may be working in favour of boys,” said a medical school professor.
NEET (National Eligibility and Entrance Test) was introduced in May 2014 as a pan-India examination but it was scrapped in September the same year after receiving flak from students. States then began conducting their own CETs, based on the local school board syllabus. In April 2016, the Supreme Court reintroduced NEET, scrapping all state CETs to make NEET the single- window entrance exam for admissions to all medical and dental institutes in the country. “Now, with NEET, the trend in Maharashtra has turned around. We will see more boys join the MBBS course this year as compared to what we saw in the previous years; said Pravin Shingare, head, State DMER.
Some fear this trend may hold true across the country. While the success rate of girls in NEET is better than that of boys nationally, higher ranks elude them. Of the total 13.3 lakh students who registered for the test, 56% were girls. The success rate of girls is also around the same.
This year, there were a mere 14 girls in the Top 50 NEET rankers. When Maharashtra conducted its own CET, girls performed better. In 2008, 49 girls were in the TOP 100 ranks in the state entrance merit list. The numbers gradually dropped to the 30s and this year to 28.
The 2018 trend has turned around to the time when the state saw its first woman doctor, Anandibai Gopal, graduate in 1877. For years, most girls shied away from the medical profession – perhaps because of the length of the course or grueling work hours – with graduating batches toll almost the mid – 1980s producing more male doctors. Soon, the skewed gender ratio started turning around though.
The 2011data shows that 1,091 girls joined the course against 967 boys. For long, in almost all health science programmes, more girls took admission in courses such as nursing, dentistry and physiotherapy.
Hen Dr. Partha Roy entered a medical school in 1974, 10% of the students were girls. The trend reversed in 1980s and gad continued since.
When Dr. Rajeev Chahabra joined Grant medical College in 1981, there were 60% girls in his class. “ This was when there was no coaching. Girls did well in school and high school, and many went on to qualify for medicine. Today, you will see coaching for NEET has altered the gender ratio. Look closer and there are many more boys in the reserved categories,” said Chhabra.
Whether more girls return to the bastion that they once ruled; only time will tell.



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