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The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) is set to revolutionize its examination system for students. The objective part of the common proficiency test (CPT), read entrance exam, will be conducted online. Not only that, it can be taken anytime as per the student’s convenience.

The system, which is expected to be in place by the end of the year, will enable ICAI to create the country’s largest online test platform by any institute through its own network and infrastructure. Henceforth students need not wait for the quarterly or half-yearly timetable.

During the last two and half years, two lakh students have appeared for CPT and 93,000 have succeeded. According to ICAI officials, the number of CA aspirants is increasing rapidly and considering the increasing popularity of the course, the institute has also started conducting exams abroad, at Abu Dhabi and Dubai.

The institute has announced that it will conduct CPT twice a year before phasing out the system. Earlier the CPT was conducted in February, May, August and November. Now, it will conduct CPT in June and December.

“We have already set up 80 computer labs in parts of India and at least 40 new would come up in next couple of months with considerable investments. It would allow students to appear for CPT anytime and also enable us to deliver results immediately after the test. We intend to implement the same system for any other exams where the test has only objective questions,” ICAI president VK Jain told ET.

Commenting on the increasing popularity for CA studies, ICAI vice-president Uttam Agarwal said, “With rapidly growing economy and changing market scenario, CAs are in great demand not just in corporate houses but also financial institutions and KPO houses. Thanks to the improving remuneration and glamorous job opportunities, we are witnessing the increasing number of students aspiring to undertake CA studies.” He added that online tests will make the studies more student friendly.

Mr. Jain avoided commenting on the total investment by the institute in creating the online platform. “We are a not for profit organization with sufficient funds and intend to utilize our resources largely for studies and research in our field,” he said. Mr. Jain added that the institute would not add any financial burden on students and continue to offer cost effective education to students.



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