JEE Main 2019 Joint Entrance Exam Main
Last Updated: 31st May, 2019
7th Apr 2019
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JEE Main 2019: Know why the percentile based ranking can be a problem for the aspirants

By: Archana on May 21, 2019

One week after the declaration of JEE Main 2019 result by National Testing Agency (NTA), there is a lot of dissatisfaction among the aspirants. A majority of the aspirants are not very happy with the new marking strategy of the authority as the candidates feel that the luck paid a vital role in the final rank list.


JEE Main 2019 Result was declared on May 14 and soon after the announcement, huge number of candidates showing disappointment for the new percentile ranking system. As per NTA this year the rank list will be prepared based on the percentile not the score secured by applicant.

 Also Read: JEE Main 2019 merit list will be declared on basis of percentile

This year was quite a change for the applicants of JEE Main after the introduction of NTA. Earlier the exam was conducted by CBSE in one shift but after NTA the exam was conducted twice this year. Not just this, earlier the ranking was allotted entirely based on the scores of the candidate. The ranking system can be understood more clearly with the below table from last year's JEE Main Result:

JEE Main 2019 Rank Vs. Score












10, 000


20, 000

After introduction of NTA, there was not much change in the JEE Main Exam Pattern and candidates have to attend the similar questions, mark distribution and sections. However, there is change in the ranking process. Candidates are allocated percentile based on their performance in the examination and candidates with highest percentile will be allotted the rank accordingly.

This year a lot student took the examination in both the sessions and get percentile score for both the examinations. Then rank list of the candidates was prepared based on the best percentile amongst these two sessions. The new ranking system works on the method were scores do not determine rank, but the percentile does.

The concern here is that there is possibility where a candidate who appeared in a particular session have a high score but the percentile may be comparatively low, that will change the entire rank of the student.

The percentiles are determined and affected by a lot of external factors like difficulty level of the examination, candidate's performance in the exam and the number of students getting high score in that particular examination.

To explain better that how the percentile ranking system affects the overall ranking of a student as well as JEE Main Counselling, here is an example:

Suppose that Student A has scored 285 marks in January session of JEE Main and his/her percentile is 99.56. At the same time Student B, who appeared for April Session of JEE Main 2019 has scored 171 marks with a percentile of 98.92. When we will see the final ranking in particular, student A's rank will be 5060 and student B's will be 12420.

If we talk about last year when the exam was conducted just once the rank difference in A and B would have been more than 20, 000 but in current scenarios the difference is approximately 7000. So, there is no doubt that the newly introduced NTA's ranking system is a disadvantage for the applicants and left some students uproar.

Candidates can see the below table to understand the ranking difference from last year's examination  by comparing the scores of last year's rank and this year's rank respectively.


Rank in 2018

Rank in 2019



















With the above data we clearly understand that the system of normalization works fine for the examination that depends entirely on cutoff, for example prelim examination of banking, SSC, LIC etc which needs to follow the elimination process. But for the examinations like Joint Engineering Entrance it makes no sense.


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