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Indian Institutes of Technology

Indian Institutes of Technology is located in India
Delhi(New Delhi)
(New Delhi)
Location of the 16 functioning (green) IITs. Five more (blue) planned. IITs name (city/town, if different from name)

The Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) is a prestigious group of autonomous public engineering and management institutes of India. The IITs are governed by the Institutes of Technology Act, 1961 which has declared them as "institutions of national importance", and lays down their powers, duties, framework for governance etc.[1][2] The Institutes of Technology Act, 1961 lists sixteen institutes located at Bhubaneswar, Chennai, Delhi, Gandhinagar, Guwahati, Hyderabad, Indore, Jodhpur, Kanpur, Kharagpur, Mandi, Mumbai, Patna, Ropar, Roorkee and Varanasi. Each IIT is an autonomous institution, linked to the others through a common IIT Council, which oversees their administration. The IITs award degrees ranging from B.Tech to PhD.

The IITs have a common admission process for undergraduate admissions. It was called IIT-JEE, which was replaced by Joint Entrance Examination in 2013. The post-graduate level program that awards M.Tech degree in engineering is administered by the older IITs (Kharagpur, Bombay, Madras, Kanpur, Delhi, Roorkee, Varanasi, Guwahati). M.Tech admission is done on the basis of Graduate Aptitude Test in Engineering (GATE). In addition to B.Tech and M.Tech programs IITs also award other graduate degrees such as M.Sc in Engineering, Maths, Physics and Chemistry, MBA, PhD etc. Admission to these programs of IITs is done through Common Admission Test(CAT), Joint Admission Test for Masters (JAM) and Common Entrance Examination for Design (CEED).[3]


  • Institutes 1
    • Proposed New IITs 1.1
  • History 2
  • Organisational structure 3
  • Education 4
    • Undergraduate education 4.1
    • Postgraduate and doctoral education 4.2
  • Culture and student life 5
    • Technical and cultural festivals 5.1
  • Recognition 6
    • Educational rankings 6.1
  • Criticism 7
    • Brain drain 7.1
    • Entrance competition 7.2
  • Alumni 8
  • See also 9
  • References 10
  • Further reading 11
  • External links 12


The IITs are located in:

IITs and locations, sorted alphabetically[2][4][5]
Name Photo Short Name Established City/Town State/UT Website
IIT Bhubaneswar IITBBS 2008 Bhubaneswar Odisha
IIT Bombay IITB 1958 Mumbai Maharashtra
IIT Delhi IITD 1963‡(founded in 1961) New Delhi Delhi
IIT Gandhinagar IITGN 2008 Gandhinagar Gujarat
IIT Guwahati IITG 1994 Guwahati Assam
IIT Hyderabad IITH 2008 Hyderabad Telangana
IIT Indore IITI 2009 Indore Madhya Pradesh
IIT Jodhpur IITJ 2008 Jodhpur Rajasthan
IIT Kanpur IITK 1959 Kanpur Uttar Pradesh
IIT Kharagpur IITKGP 1951 Kharagpur West Bengal
IIT Madras IITM 1959 Chennai Tamil Nadu
IIT Mandi IIT Mandi 2009 Mandi Himachal Pradesh
IIT Patna IITP 2008 Patna Bihar
IIT Roorkee IITR 2001‡(founded in 1847) Roorkee Uttarakhand
IIT Ropar IITRPR 2008 Rupnagar Punjab
IIT (BHU) Varanasi IIT(BHU) 2012‡(founded in 1919) Varanasi Uttar Pradesh

‡ – year converted to IIT

Proposed New IITs

Indian School of Mines, with approval of its Finance Committee, Executive Board and General Council, had forwarded the proposal for its conversion into an IIT in 2009, after which a detailed project report was prepared as per the directions of the Union Ministry of Human Resource and Development. In September 2011, a resolution was passed by the Government of Jharkhand, recommending the Government of India to convert ISM to an IIT.[6] In June 2012, the Planning Commission favoured this conversion during the 12th Five Year Plan (2012-2017), while maintaining ISM's core competency in mining and geology.[7][8][9] The conversion of ISM to IIT became a part of current 5 Year Plan after its passage by the Prime Minister headed National Development Council in December 2012.[10] It may be noted that for this conversion, a Bill has to be introduced in Parliament by the Union HRD Minister. ISM is the only institute of India selected by National Development Council or NDC to be converted into an IIT in the 12th Five Year Plan.ISM students have already obtained the support of majority of M.P.'s on this matter. A meeting of IIT Council for the same was held on 12 January 2013. In this meeting, setting up of an expert committee for review of this matter was proposed. The committee formation is currently in process, as of June 2014.

The Government of India, in its budget of July 2014, announced setting up of 5 new IITs in Jammu and Kashmir (possibly at Jammu), Chhattisgarh, Goa,[11] Andhra Pradesh (possibly at Tirupati) and Kerala Palakkad.[12][13]


The office of the Hijli Detention Camp (photographed September 1951) served as the first academic building of IIT Kharagpur.

The history of the IIT system dates back to 1946 when Sir Jogendra Singh of the Viceroy's Executive Council set up a committee whose task was to consider the creation of Higher Technical Institutions for post-war industrial development in India. The 22-member committee, headed by Nalini Ranjan Sarkar, recommended the establishment of these institutions in various parts of India, with affiliated secondary institutions.

The first Indian Institute of Technology was founded in May 1950 at the site of the Hijli Detention Camp in Kharagpur. On 15 September 1956, the Parliament of India passed the Indian Institute of Technology (Kharagpur) Act, declaring it as an Institute of National Importance. Jawaharlal Nehru, first Prime Minister of India, in the first convocation address of IIT Kharagpur in 1956 said:[14]

On the recommendations of the Sarkar Committee, four campuses were established at Mumbai (1958), Chennai (1959), Kanpur (1959), and Delhi (1961). The location of these campuses was chosen to be scattered throughout India to prevent regional imbalance.[15] The Indian Institutes of Technology Act was amended to reflect the addition of new IITs.[1] Student agitations in the state of Assam made Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi promise the creation of a new IIT in Assam. This led to a sixth campus at Guwahati under the Assam Accord in 1994. The University of Roorkee, India's oldest engineering college, was conferred IIT status in 2001.

IITG estd. 1994

Over the past few years, there have been a number of developments toward establishing new IITs. On 1 October 2003, Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee announced plans to create more IITs "by upgrading existing academic institutions that have the necessary promise and potential".[16] Subsequent developments led to the formation of the S K Joshi Committee in November 2003 to guide the selection of the five institutions which would become the five new IITs. Based on the initial recommendations of the Sarkar Committee, it was decided that further IITs should be spread throughout the country. When the government expressed its willingness to correct this regional imbalance, 16 states demanded IITs. Since the S K Joshi Committee prescribed strict guidelines for institutions aspiring to be IITs,[17] only seven colleges were selected for final consideration.[18] Plans are also reported to open IITs outside India, though not enough progress has been made in this regard.[19] Eventually in the 11th Five year plan, eight states were identified for establishment of new IITs, and IT-BHU was converted into an IIT.[20]

Organisational structure

Organisational Structure of IITs

The ex officio Visitor,[21] and having residual powers. Directly under the President is the IIT Council, which comprises the minister-in-charge of technical education in the Union Government, the Chairmen of all IITs, the Directors of all IITs, the Chairman of the University Grants Commission, the Director General of CSIR, the Chairman of IISc, the Director of IISc, three members of Parliament, the Joint Council Secretary of Ministry of Human Resource and Development, and three appointees each of the Union Government, AICTE, and the Visitor.[22]

Under the IIT Council is the Board of Governors of each IIT. Under the Board of Governors is the Director, who is the chief academic and executive officer of the IIT.[23] Under the Director, in the organisational structure, comes the Deputy Director. Under the Director and the Deputy Director, come the [24]


PK Kelkar Library, IIT Kanpur

The IITs receive comparatively higher grants than other engineering colleges in India.[25] While the total government funding to most other engineering colleges is around Rs. 100–200 million (USD 2–4 million) per year, the amount varies between Rs. 900–1,300 million (USD 18–26 million) per year for each IIT.[18] Other sources of funds include student fees and research funding from industry and contributions from the alumni. The faculty-to-student ratio in the IITs is between 1:6 and 1:8.[26] The Standing Committee of IIT Council (SCIC) prescribes the lower limit for faculty-to-student ratio as 1:9, applied department wise. The IITs subsidise undergraduate student fees by approximately 80% and provide scholarships to all Master of Technology students and Research Scholars in order to encourage students for higher studies, per the recommendations of the Thacker Committee (1959–1961).[27] The cost borne by undergraduate students is around Rs. 180,000 per annum.[28]

The various IITs function autonomously, and their special status as Institutes of National Importance facilitates the smooth running of IITs, virtually free from both regional as well as student politics. Such autonomy means that IITs can create their own curricula and adapt rapidly to the changes in educational requirements, free from bureaucratic hurdles. The government has no direct control over internal policy decisions of IITs (like faculty recruitment and curricula) but has representation on the IIT Council. The medium of instruction in all IITs is English.[29] The classes are usually held between 7:30 am and 5:30 pm, though there are some variations within each IIT. All the IITs have public libraries for the use of their students. In addition to a collection of prescribed books, the libraries have sections for fiction and other literary genres. The electronic libraries allow students to access on-line journals and periodicals. The IITs and IISc have taken an initiative along with Ministry of Human Resource Development to provide free online videos of actual lectures of different disciplines under National Program on Technology Enhanced Learning. This initiative is undertaken to make quality education accessible to all students.[30] The lectures can be accessed at

The academic policies of each IIT are decided by its Senate. This comprises all professors of the IIT and student representatives. Unlike many western universities that have an elected senate, the IITs have an academic senate. It controls and approves the curriculum, courses, examinations and results, and appoints committees to look into specific academic matters. The teaching, training and research activities of the institute are periodically reviewed by the senate to maintain educational standards.[31] The Director of an IIT is the ex-officio Chairman of the Senate.

Central Library, IIT Roorkee

All the IITs follow the credits system of performance evaluation, with proportional weighting of courses based on their importance. The total marks (usually out of 100) form the basis of grades, with a grade value (out of 10) assigned to a range of marks. Sometimes, relative grading is done considering the overall performance of the whole class. For each semester, the students are graded on a scale of 0 to 10 based on their performance, by taking a weighted average of the grade points from all the courses, with their respective credit points. Each semester evaluation is done independently and then the weighted average over all semesters is used to calculate the cumulative grade point average (known as CGPA or CPI—Cumulative Performance Index).

Undergraduate education

IIT Madras Library

The Bachelor of Technology (BTech) degree is the most common undergraduate degree in the IITs in terms of student enrollment, although dual degrees integrating Master of Science or Master of Arts are also offered. The BTech course is based on a 4-year program with eight semesters,[32] while the Dual Degree and Integrated courses are 5-year programs with ten semesters. In all IITs, the first year of BTech and Dual Degree courses are marked by a common course structure for all the students, though in some IITs, a single department introduction related course is also included.[33] The common courses include the basics from most of the departments like Electronics, Mechanics, Chemistry, Electrical and Physics. At the end of first year (the end of first semester at IIT Madras), an option to change departments is given to meritorious students on the basis of their performance in the first two semesters.[34] Few such changes ultimately take place as the criteria for them are usually strict,[34] limited to the most meritorious students.

From the second year onwards, the students study subjects exclusively from their respective departments.[35] In addition to these, the students have to take compulsory advanced courses from other departments in order to broaden their education. Separate compulsory courses from

  • Media related to at Wikimedia Commons

External links

  • Rajguru, Suvarna; Pant, Ranjan (2003). IIT India's Intellectual Treasures. India: Indus Media.  
  • Kripalani, Manjeet; Engardio, Pete; Spiro, Leah Nathans (1998). "INDIA'S WHIZ KIDS – Inside the Indian Institutes of Technology's star factory". BusinessWeek (International ed.). 
  • Kirpal, Viney; Gupta, Meenakshi (1999). Equality Through Reservations. India: Vedams.  
  • Deb, Sandipan (2004). The IITians. India: Penguin Books.  
  • Murali, Kanta (1 February 2003). "The IIT Story: Issues and Concerns".  
  • Rajguru, Suvarna (30 December 2005). "What makes the IITs so chic". LittleINDIA. Retrieved 27 August 2006. 
  • Gates, Bill (17 January 2003). "Bill Gates Speech Transcript – Indian Institute of Technology 50th Anniversary Celebration Keynote".  
  • Bhagat, Chetan (2004).  
  • Agarwal, Rajeev (2013).  
  • Subbarao, E.C. (2008). An Eye for Excellence – 50 innovative years of IIT Kanpur. India: Harper Collins India.  

Further reading

  1. ^ a b "The Institutes of Technology Act, 1961" (PDF). Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay. 24 May 2005. Retrieved 14 May 2006. 
  2. ^ a b "IIT Act (As amended till 2012". Retrieved 10 September 2012. 
  3. ^ "CAT replaces JMET in IIT, IISc". Deccan Chronicle. 27 August 2011. Retrieved 1 October 2012. 
  4. ^ "Gazette Notification of the Bill". 29 June 2012. Retrieved 2 July 2012. 
  5. ^ "Institute History – Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur". IIT Kharagpur. Archived from the original on 20 April 2008. Retrieved 22 October 2008. 
  6. ^ "ISM varsity gets new director - Times Of India". 9 September 2011. Retrieved 11 September 2011. 
  7. ^ ISM could be upgraded as IIT
  8. ^ ‘Indian School of Mines could be converted as IIT’
  9. ^ Indian School of Mines welcomes IIT tag plan
  10. ^ See page 99 of pdf file after clicking here
  11. ^
  12. ^ "Government proposes to set up 5 more IITs and IIMs". IANS. Retrieved 10 July 2014. 
  13. ^
  14. ^ Kharagpur, Indian Institute of Technology (14 May 2006). "Institute History". Archived from the original on 8 July 2006. Retrieved 14 May 2006. 
  15. ^ See "more IIT" in references below. Under "Final selection", third paragraph
  16. ^ Upadhyaya, Yogesh K (23 March 2005). "The making of new IITs".  
  17. ^ Upadhyaya, Yogesh K (18 August 2005). "The march of the new IITs".  
  18. ^ a b Upadhyaya, Yogesh K (25 May 2005). "New IITs: A long journey ahead".  
  19. ^ Times News Network (1 May 2005). "Desi IITs in pardes: conditions apply". Economic Times Online (Bennett, Coleman and Co. Ltd.). Archived from the original on 2 May 2007. Retrieved 27 August 2006. 
  20. ^ "Press Note – States identified for locating new central institutions of higher education in the 11th five year plan". Press Information Bureau, Government of India. 28 March 2008. Retrieved 29 March 2008. 
  21. ^ "Visitor of the Institute". IIT Kharagpur. 18 November 2005. Archived from the original on 22 September 2007. Retrieved 7 January 2007. 
  22. ^ "IIT-Council". IIT Kharagpur. 18 November 2005. Archived from the original on 21 September 2007. Retrieved 7 January 2007. 
  23. ^ a b "Organisational Structure". IIT Kharagpur. 18 November 2005. Archived from the original on 22 September 2007. Retrieved 7 January 2007. 
  24. ^ "Organizational Structure". Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur. 3 March 2006. Retrieved 14 May 2006. 
  25. ^ "Performance based funding of IITs" (PDF).  
  26. ^ Rajguru, Suvarna (30 December 2005). "What makes the IITs so chic". LittleINDIA. Retrieved 27 August 2006. 
  27. ^ Natarajan, R. "The Evolution of Postgraduate Engineering Education and Research in India" (PDF). CAGS 2005 Conference. Canadian Association for Graduate Studies. p. 12. Archived from the original on 21 September 2006. Retrieved 27 August 2006. 
  28. ^ "Kakodkar panel suggests steep hike in tuition fee at IITs – Indian Express". The Indian Express. Retrieved 31 May 2011. 
  29. ^ "Structure of B. Tech Programme (Ordinance under R.2.9)". Ordinances. IIT Madras. Archived from the original on 20 November 2007. Retrieved 20 November 2007. 
  30. ^ "NPTEL". The Hindu (Chennai, India). 9 March 2009. Retrieved 14 December 2011. 
  31. ^ Prabhu, S.S. (September–November 2000). "Engineering Education in a Flux". Report of the Review Committee. IIT Kanpur. Retrieved 27 August 2006. 
  32. ^ "Structure of B. Tech Programme (Ordinance No.3)". Ordinances. IIT Madras. Archived from the original on 22 June 2007. Retrieved 7 January 2007. 
  33. ^ "Structure of B. Tech Programme (Ordinance under R.4.2:Class Committee)". Ordinances. IIT Madras. Archived from the original on 22 June 2007. Retrieved 7 January 2007. 
  34. ^ a b "Structure of B. Tech Programme (Ordinance under R.5.0:Change of Branch)". Ordinances. IIT Madras. Archived from the original on 22 June 2007. Retrieved 7 January 2007. 
  35. ^ "Structure of B. Tech Programme (Ordinance under R.2.0 (ii))". Ordinances. IIT Madras. Archived from the original on 22 June 2007. Retrieved 7 January 2007. 
  36. ^ "Structure of B. Tech Programme (Ordinance under R.2.0 (iii))". Ordinances. IIT Madras. Archived from the original on 22 June 2007. Retrieved 7 January 2007. 
  37. ^ Senate, IIT Madras. "B. Tech Ordinances". Senate Ordinances. IIT Madras. Archived from the original on 17 May 2006. Retrieved 26 May 2006. 
  38. ^ Ordinance under Ordinance No. 3
  39. ^ Natarajan, R. "The Evolution of Postgraduate Engineering Education and Research in India" (PDF). CAGS 2005 Conference. Canadian Association for Graduate Studies. p. 6. Archived from the original on 21 September 2006. Retrieved 27 August 2006. 
  40. ^ Natarajan, R. "The Evolution of Postgraduate Engineering Education and Research in India" (PDF). CAGS 2005 Conference. Canadian Association for Graduate Studies. p. 25. Archived from the original on 21 September 2006. Retrieved 27 August 2006. 
  41. ^ "Getting Admission to PhD Seats in IITs gets simplified". Retrieved 17 September 2013. 
  42. ^
  43. ^ [1] Ordinance under R.27.0 NCC / NSO / NSS Requirements Archived 22 June 2007 at the Wayback Machine
  44. ^ The Director, IIT Madras (8 May 2005). "Director's Report" (PDF). IIT Madras. p. 36. Archived from the original on 15 May 2006. Retrieved 26 May 2006. 
  45. ^ Welcome To AICTE
  46. ^ Kumar, Prabhat (18 February 2003). "How to extend the IIT brand".  
  47. ^ "Example of Faculty Recruitment Page of IIT Kharagpur". IIT Kharagpur. Retrieved 14 May 2006. 
  48. ^ Times News Network (15 January 2003). "Taking Wings". The Economic Times (India). Archived from the original on 8 October 2006. Retrieved 14 May 2006. 
  49. ^ The Library of, Congress (26 April 2005). "House Resolution 227". Bill Text for the 109th Congress (2005–2006). The House of Representatives, U.S. Retrieved 14 May 2006. 
  50. ^ Iype, George (8 April 2005). "Wen might take IIT to China".  
  51. ^ "Top Engineering Colleges".  
  52. ^ "Best Engineering colleges 2012".  
  53. ^ "India's Top Engineering Colleges 2011 (DQ-CMR Top T-Schools Survey 2011)".  
  54. ^ "QS World University Rankings". QS Quacquarelli Symonds Limited. 2012. Retrieved 30 September 2011. 
  55. ^ "Top 400 – The Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2011–2012". The Times Higher Education. 2011. Retrieved 6 October 2011. 
  56. ^ "Academic Ranking of World Universities: Global". Institute of Higher Education, Shanghai Jiao Tong University. 2011. Retrieved 30 August 2011. 
  57. ^ 
  58. ^
  59. ^ "Poor quality of students entering IITs: Narayana Murthy - The Times of India". The Times of India. 
  60. ^ a b IANS (7 March 2006). "Trend of brain drain on reverse to India". The Hindustan Times. Retrieved 17 March 2009. 
  61. ^  
  62. ^ "Successful students in IIT-JEE 2005". Brilliant Tutorials. Archived from the original on 21 April 2007. Retrieved 14 May 2006. 
  63. ^ Idichandy, V G (11 October 2005). "Why the IIT-JEE pattern was changed".  
  64. ^ a b Nobel laureate Venkat Ramakrishnan failed IIT, medical entrance tests – India – The Times of India
  65. ^ "Change in IIT-JEE pattern from academic year 2006". Retrieved 14 May 2006. 
  66. ^ Rukmini Shrinivasan & Hemali Chhapia (31 March 2006). "3 lakh students to vie for IIT entry this year". The Times of India. Retrieved 14 May 2006. 
  67. ^ Jhimli Mukherjee Pandey (4 May 2005). "Crack the IIT code, it's too easy". The Times of India. Retrieved 30 May 2006. 
  68. ^ "Sahitya Parishad demands entrance tests in Gujarati – Times Of India". 21 September 2011. Retrieved 28 October 2011. 
  69. ^ "Another PIL seeks entrance tests in Gujarati – Times Of India". 21 October 2011. Retrieved 28 October 2011. 
  70. ^ "Plea to write IIT entrance in Tamil | Deccan Chronicle". The Deccan Chronicle. Retrieved 20 January 2012. 
  71. ^ "PM’s inaugural address at the ‘PAN IIT-2008’ – IIT Alumni Global Conference". Press Information Bureau. 19 December 2008. Retrieved 8 August 2009. 
  72. ^ Rogers, Bruce (19 November 2012). "How Ajit Gupta's Aryaka is Disrupting the Wide Area Network Business". Forbes. 
  73. ^
  74. ^ a b!/view/#adv-alumni/
  75. ^


See also

Many IITians have contributed to innovations in science and technology, such as

Many alumni have gained significant recognition:

IIT alumni have also pursued careers in politics; for example:

Other alumni have achieved leading positions in corporations, such as:

Many IIT's alumni have become entrepreneurs, including

As of 2008, the alumni of IIT number more than 170,000.[71] The IITians are known for their loyalty to their alma mater and many IIT Alumni Associations are active in India and abroad. The IIT alumni either help their alma mater in the form of donations, or by preferential job opportunities extended to students from the IITs. The Vinod Gupta School of Management at IIT Kharagpur and Shailesh J. Mehta School of Management at IIT Bombay are management schools within IITs that have been established largely by alumni donations; these schools were named after their benefactors.


Another criticism is about the language of the exam. IIT-JEE is conducted only in English and Hindi, making it harder for students where regional languages, like Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Urdu, Oriya, Bengali, Marathi, Assamese or Gujarati, are more prominent. As an example, in September 2011, the Gujarat High Court has acted on a Public Interest Litigation by the Gujarati Sahitya Parishad, for conducting the exams in Gujarati.[68] A second petition was made in October by Navsari's Sayaji Vaibhav Sarvajanik Pustakalaya Trust.[69] Another petition was made at the Madras High Court for conducting the exam in Tamil. In the petition it was claimed that not conducting the exam in the regional languages is in violation of article 14 of the Constitution of India.[70]

Not all children are of a similar aptitude level and may be skilled in different paradigms and fields. This has led to criticism of the way the examinations are conducted and the way a student is forced in the Indian community. The IIT-JEE format was restructured in 2006 following these complaints.[65] After the change to the objective pattern of questioning, even the students who initially considered themselves not fit for subjective pattern of IIT-JEE decided to take the examination. Though the restructuring was meant to reduce the dependence of students on coaching classes, it led to an increase in students registering for coaching classes.[66] Some people (mostly IITians) have criticised the changed pattern of the IIT-JEE. Their reasoning is that while IIT-JEE traditionally used to test students understanding of fundamentals and ability to apply them to solve tough unseen problems, the current pattern does not stress much on the application part and might lead to a reduced quality of students.[67]

The highly competitive examination in the form of IIT-JEE has led to establishment of a large number of coaching institutes throughout the country that provide intensive, and specific preparation for the IIT-JEE for substantial fees. It is argued that this favours students from specific regions and richer backgrounds. Some coaching institutes say that they have individually coached nearly 800 successful candidates year after year.[62] According to some estimates, nearly 95% of all students who clear the IIT-JEE had joined coaching classes.[63] Indeed, this was the case regarding preparation for IIT entrance exams even decades ago. In a January 2010 lecture at the Indian Institute of Science, the 2009 Nobel laureate in Chemistry, Venkatraman Ramakrishnan revealed that he failed to get a seat at any of the colleges of the Indian Institutes of Technology, as well as at an Indian medical college.[64] He also said that his parents, being old-fashioned, did not believe in coaching classes to prepare for the IIT entrance exam and considered them to be "nonsense".[64]

Entrance competition

The extent of intellectual loss receded substantially over the 1990s and 2000s, with the percentage of students going abroad dropping from as high as 70% at one time to around 30% in 2005.[60] This is largely attributed to the liberalisation of the Indian economy and the opening of previously closed markets. Government initiatives are encouraging IIT students into entrepreneurship programs and are increasing foreign investment. Emerging scientific and manufacturing industries, and outsourcing of technical jobs from North America and Western Europe have created opportunities for aspiring graduates in India. Many undergraduates go abroad to pursue further studies, such as MS, MBA and PhD.

Among the criticisms of the IIT system by the media and academia, a common notion is that it encourages brain drain. This trend has been reversed somewhat- (dubbed the reverse brain drain) – as hundreds of IIT graduates, who have pursued further studies in the USA, started returning to India in the 1990s.[60] Additionally, IIT alumni are giving back generously to their parent institutions (examples are Kanwal Rekhi to IIT Bombay, Dr. Prabhakant Sinha to IIT Kharagpur, and many others). Until liberalisation started in early 1990s, India experienced large scale emigration of IITians to developed countries, especially to the United States. Since 1953, nearly twenty-five thousand IITians have settled in the USA.[61] Since the USA benefited from subsidised education in IITs at the cost of Indian taxpayers' money, critics say that subsidising education in IITs is useless. Others support the emigration of graduates, arguing that the capital sent home by the IITians has been a major source of the expansion of foreign exchange reserves for India, which, until the 1990s, had a substantial trade deficit.

Brain drain

The IITs have faced criticism from within and outside academia. Major concerns include allegations that they encourage brain drain and that their stringent entrance examinations encourage coaching colleges and skew the socio-economic profile of the student body. Recently some prominent IITians have also questioned the quality of teaching and research in IITs.[57][58][59]


Worldwide, the only three institutes in India ranked in the top 300 of the QS World University Rankings of 2012 are IITs, IIT Delhi at 212, IIT Bombay at 227 and IIT Kanpur at 278.[54] The only Institute that was listed in the top 250 by Times Higher Education rankings was IIT Kharagpur in the 226-250 category. The Times Asia Rankings featured IIT Kharagpur, IIT Bombay and IIT Roorkee at 30th, 34th and 56th respectively. The only institute in India ranked by The Times Higher Education Supplement ranking of 2011–2012 is an IIT, IIT Bombay at 301–350.[55] However, no IIT was ranked in the Shanghai Jiao Tong University's Academic Ranking of World Universities of 2011, and the only institute in India to be listed was Indian Institute of Science at 301–400.[56]

Nationwide, most IITs are ranked above any other engineering colleges in India in engineering education rankings. Outlook India '​s Top Engineering Colleges of 2012 ranked seven IITs in its top 10, including the top five positions.[51] India Today '​s Best Engineering colleges of 2012 also ranked seven IITs in its top 10, including the top four.[52] Dataquest '​s India's Top Engineering Colleges 2011 (DQ-CMR Top T-Schools Survey 2011) ranked IITs in six of the top 10, including the top four.[53]

Educational rankings

Former IIT students get greater respect from their peers, academia and industry in general.[48] The IIT brand was reaffirmed when the United States House of Representatives passed a resolution honouring Indian Americans and especially graduates of IIT for their contributions to the American society.[49] Similarly, China also recognised the value of IITs and planned to replicate the model.[50]

IITs have a special status as Institutes of National Importance under the Indian Institute of Technology Act, due to which the degrees provided by IITs need not be recognised by the AICTE.[45] The IIT-JEE and GATE are important factor behind the success of IITs, as it enables the IITs to accept only a select group of meritorious students. This combination of success factors has led to the concept of the IIT Brand.[46] Other factors that have contributed to the success of IITs are stringent faculty recruitment procedures and industry collaboration. The procedure for selection of faculty in IITs is stricter as compared to other colleges offering similar degrees.[47] The PhD degree is a pre-requisite for all regular faculty appointments.


Annual Alcheringa (IIT Guwahati), Exodia (IIT Mandi), Saarang (IIT Madras, previously Mardi Gras), Spring Fest (IIT Kharagpur, also known as SF), Rendezvous (IIT Delhi), Tarang (previously Rave) and Thomso (IIT Roorkee), Kashiyatra (IIT BHU, also known as KY), SPANDAN (IIT Rajasthan), Blithchron (IIT Gandhinagar), ELAN (IIT Hyderabad), Alma Fiesta (IIT Bhubaneswar), Mood Indigo (IIT Bombay, also known as Mood-I), Antaragni (IIT Kanpur), Zeitgeist (IIT Ropar) and Anwesha (IIT Patna).

All IITs organise annual technical festivals, typically lasting three or four days. The technical festivals are UNESCO) for providing a platform to students to showcase their talent in science and technology. Shaastra holds the distinction of being the first student-managed event in the world to implement a formal Quality Management System, earning ISO 9001:2000 certification.[44] Kshitij is the largest in terms of Sponsorship amounts and also branded as a techno-management festival due to its emphasis on both technology and management.

Technical and cultural festivals

is organized annually where participants from all 16 IITs contest for the General Championship Trophy in 13 different sports. Inter IIT Sports Meet, badminton, and athletics; and swimming pools for aquatic events. Usually the hostels also have their own sports grounds. Moreover, an lawn tennis, volleyball, hockey, football (soccer), cricket, basketball All the IITs have sports grounds for [43]) throughout their stay in the IIT. Students in all IITs must choose between halls All the IITs provide on-campus residential facilities to the students, research scholars and faculty. The students live in hostels (sometimes referred to as

Culture and student life

The IITs, along with NITs and IISc, account for nearly 80% of all engineering PhDs in India.[40] IITs now allow admission in PhD programs without the mandatory GATE score.[41][42]

The IITs also offer the Doctor of Philosophy degree (PhD) as part of their doctoral education programme. In it, the candidates are given a topic of academic interest by the professor or have to work on a consultancy project given by the industries. The duration of the program is usually unspecified and depends on the specific discipline. PhD candidates have to submit a dissertation as well as provide an oral defence for their thesis. Teaching Assistantships (TA) and Research Assistantships (RA) are often provided.

Doctoral degrees

The IITs also offer an unconventional BTech and MTech integrated educational program called "Dual Degree". It integrates undergraduate and postgraduate studies in selected areas of specialisation. It is completed in five years[38] as against six years in conventional BTech (four years) followed by an MTech (two years).[39] Integrated Master of Science programs are also offered at few IITs which integrates the Undergraduate and Postgraduate studies in Science streams in a single degree program against the conventional University system. These programs were started to allow IITians to complete postgraduate studies from IIT rather than having to go to another institute.

Bachelors-Masters dual degrees

Several IITs have schools of management offering masters degrees in management or business administration.

Some of the IITs offer an M.S. (by research) program; the MTech and M.S. are similar to the US universities' non-thesis (course based) and thesis (research based) masters programs respectively. Admissions to masters programs in engineering are made using scores of the Graduate Aptitude Test in Engineering (GATE), while those to masters programs in science are made using scores of the Joint Admission Test to MSc (JAM).

The IITs offer a number of postgraduate programs including Master of Technology (MTech), Master of Business Administration (MBA) (only for engineers and post graduates in science), and Master of Science (MSc). Some IITs offer specialised graduate programmes such as Master of Design (M.Des.), the Post Graduate Diploma in Information Technology (PGDIT), Master in Medical Science and Technology (MMST), Master of City Planning (MCP), Master of Arts (MA), Postgraduate Diploma in Intellectual Property Law (PGDIPL), and the Postgraduate Diploma in Maritime Operation & Management (PGDMOM).

Masters degrees and postgraduate diplomas

Postgraduate and doctoral education


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