Students enrolling in the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Madras this year, may not be able to opt for branches of their choice. IIT Madras officials said its Senate had suspended the “Branch Change at the end of the first semester” for incoming students of the 2020-21 academic year.

The IITs usually allow their students to change their branches based on their CGPA at the end of the first semester.

“Reinstatement of this facility for incoming students in future academic years will be considered once we are able to re-start normal classes and examinations on campus,” the institute said.

The institute said it would permit students of the 2020-21 incoming batch to upgrade to a five-year dual degree (B Tech + M Tech) within their B Tech, discipline or to an interdisciplinary programme in their fourth or fifth semester. “In the IDDD programmes, the M Tech degree is an inter-disciplinary field. At present there are eight IDDD programmes in the fields of advanced nanotechnology; biomedical engineering; computational engineering; data science; energy systems; quantum science and technology; robotics; and tech MBA,” the institute said.

In respect of IIT Delhi, its Director had recently tweeted, “Many JEE Adv qualified candidates are writing to me saying branch change will not be allowed for them. At @iitdelhi over 100 students are allowed to change their branch every year, based on their 1st year performance. We are indeed trying to make this process even more flexible.”

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