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How to choose an Engineering college & branch after 12th

This article, which has advice for students who plan to do a degree in Engineering, has been posted here on PuneTech, partially in response to some of the comments we’re getting for this PuneTech article, and also partially because I’m sure most PuneTech readers get asked this question by relatives and friends, and I’m hoping that at least some of the advice here will be helpful

If you’ve just finished your 12th standard, and are interested in getting an Engineering degree, which college, and which branch of Engineering to choose can seem like the most difficult, and at the same time, the most important decision of your life. People have been asking me this question for almost 20 years now, and based on my varied experience, here is the advice that I give to prospective engineers.

I can distill my advice down to this sentence:

Get into the best college (in a good city) that you can – whatever the branch.

I’ll explain in a little more detail.

Branch is not all that important

That’s right. Most students and parents seem to be very focused on getting in to the “best” branch (Computer Science, Electronics & Telecommunications, Mechanical, Chemical, Civil, etc.) Everybody wants to get into the “top” branch. Everybody wants to know which branch has the best “scope” in the future.

This is misguided. There are a number of reasons why the branch doesn’t matter all that much:

  • If you study in a good college, all branches have “scope”. There are successful businesses and well-paying jobs in all disciplines, including civil engineering, and chemical engineering. And the vast majority of computer science graduates in the country do not have decent jobs (because there are so many of them!) If you study in a bad college, a good branch is not going to help you. Also, so called “good” branches with lots of “scope” tend to be over-crowded, because everyone is entering that field. And finally, nobody really knows which branch will have the most “scope” 10 years from now. (When I did my Engineering, my friends took Computer Science in VJTI because they couldn’t get into more sought after branches like E&TC and Mechanical!)
  • Changing of field is very common amongst engineers. Just looking at my batchmates, I know metallurgical engineers who are in advertising agencies, mechanical engineers who are into banking and finance, chemical engineers working on Bollywood movies, and computer scientists in the insurance industry doing non-computer stuff. What branch you get your degree in is forgotten within 5 years of graduating.
  • What branch the student is interested in, is irrelevant. This is a big one. 12th standard students tell me, “I am more interested in Computers. I don’t like Mechanical.” Frankly, in 12th standard, you have no clue what any particular field involves. If for a field, hundreds of colleges in the country are giving engineering degrees in that field, then almost by definition, that field has interesting and cool work going on all over the world. If you find that field boring, then, the most likely explanation is that you’ve been taught that subject by a bad teacher. My guess would be this: any subject that you find very interesting was probably taught to you by a good teacher, and for every boring subject, there’s probably a bad teacher of that subject sometime in your past. A good professor in any branch can make the branch come alive for you.

I am not asking you to ignore the branch entirely. All I’m saying is that give it a little less importance than you are currently giving it.

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Madras (Chennai)
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Guwahati
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Kanpur
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Kharagpur
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Bombay
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Roorkee
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Bhubaneshwar
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Gandhinagar
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Hyderabad
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Indore
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Jodhpur
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Patna
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Rupnagar
Location of the 15 IITs in India. Source wikipedia.

College does matter

The original IITs, and BITs Pilani, are clearly better than other engineering colleges. Most NITs are better than most state engineering colleges (except the top state colleges). Top state colleges (e.g. COEP, VJTI, PICT) are clearly better than the second-tier engineering colleges. And so on. (Unfortunately, I don’t really know how good or bad the new IITs are. You’ll need to make that judgement on your own.)

It’s fashionable to say the college doesn’t matter. And it is very common to trot out examples of students from terrible colleges who have succeeded in life. But that’s flawed logic. Students who succeed inspite of being in a bad college, are probably succeeding in spite of the college, not because of the college. And probably would have done even better if they had been in a better college.

Better colleges have better systems of education, better professors, and better “resume value” (which, whether you like it or not, is a factor for a long, long time.) Also, in better colleges, you have better classmates. This matters in the short term (because better classmates means more influence of friends who are interested in the right things), and the long term (better “network”).

So, here’s my (controversial) advice: if you are getting a not-so-good branch in a very good college, vs. a good branch in a not-so-good college, you should definitely choose the not-so-good branch in the very good college. I would definitely pick Metallurgical Engineering in IIT-Bombay, over Computer Science in MIT. If the colleges are sort-of-comparable, then go for the “better” branch (for whatever definition of “better”). For example, if you have Mechanical Engineering in COEP, and Computer Science in VIT, then go for VIT – because althought COEP is better than VIT, it is not all that much better.

Note: I am not saying that you’re screwed if you get into a bad college. There are enough examples to prove that good, motivated students can shine from anywhere. All I’m saying is that if you have a choice, then choose better college over better branch. If you get into a bad college, then work hard, ignore your professors, and try to get guides/mentors/projects from industry (right away, not just in the last year).

City also matters

To a large extent, success in life is not simply about academic knowledge. It is also about a whole bunch of other factors – what we call “exposure”. This involves all kinds of things – like interactions with industry, various (non-academic) activities that you indulge in in a city, seeing the various interesting and different things that people are doing in the city, opportunities of getting involved in various initiatives, and generally “smartness” (as in “The Bombay exposure has really made him smart.”)

So, doing a degree in Pune or Bombay, is, in my opinion, clearly better than doing it in a college in Amravati.

Also, please get out of your parents’ house. Stay in a hostel, or a rented flat with a bunch of your classmates, or something. That will propel you into the real world, give you some maturity, and the ability to deal with all kinds of issues that you need to deal with, when you are no longer staying under a protective cover provided by your parents. This is an important part of your education at this stage.

Engineering vs other fields of study

Frankly, I am not qualified to give advice on whether you should do Engineering or something else. If you find that you’re interested in some “alternate” career (e.g. photography, movies, music, art, design, whatever), here are some thoughts that you might find helpful:

  • Try to find out which are the top institutes in the country where you can get a degree or certificate or whatever it is that helps with learn the field that you’re interested in. Then find out what it takes to get admission to that institute and how much it costs. And then make a detailed plan as to how you could actually do it. This will significantly improve the chances that you’ll be allowed to do it, and also that you’ll succeed in your chosen career. I would love to see more and more students in India follow this path.
  • If you can’t get into one of the top institutes, maybe you should listen to your parents? It’s difficult to justify a risky career move on the basis of a mediocre education in that field.
  • I find that most students who claim to be interested in such alternate careers are too lazy to actually do the work needed to create the plan mentioned in the first bullet-point. If you’re one of those lazy bums, then you don’t really deserve to follow your so-called chosen career. Give up, and do whatever stupid engineering degree that your parents want you to do. Alternative career paths are for people who are really passionate and are willing to put in the hard work it takes to succeed.
  • If you are not really sure of what alternate career you want to pursue, but just have a vague notion that you want to do something other than Engineering, then you’re probably not ready for an alternative career yet. No point in going for a off-the-beaten-path, risky path unless you’re really passionate about something and clear about what you want. You’ll be better off with a conventional degree, until you figure out your passion.
  • Medical vs. Engineering: Again, I’m not really qualified to give advice about whether you should go for engineering or Medicine. However, note: there are many students who avoid the medical side because they hate 10th or 12th std. biology. In this case, remember that doing a medical degree is not at all like 12th std. biology. So, this alone is not a good enough reason for rejecting medicine. Try to talk to, and find out more, from some real doctors what it is like to study medicine. You should consider medicine as a career, especially if you like people more than you like machines or software programs. If you’re not good at maths or logic, engineering is not for you.

Conclusion

If you disagree with me, please leave a comment below, with supporting arguments, and we can discuss.

If you know a 12th std student who could benefit from this article (or the discussion in the comments), please mail them this link.

Some of this advice is also applicable to engineering graduates who are planning on going abroad for a Masters degree. I’m planning on writing a detailed article specifically covering that case – issues to consider when applying for a Masters in the US. I’ll write that article one of these days – so make sure you’re subscribed to PuneTech, so you don’t miss it.

Updates

(After this post was published, readers posted a number of interesting, insightful and detailed comments. You should really read all the comments on this post, but I’ve summarized some of the important points here for the lazy folks.)

  • A number of people disagree with me about whether branch matters or not. See the comments of Neeran, Dhananjay, Vikram Karve, and Rajan Chandi for more details; and also my responses to those comments. I would summarize it as: if you’re on of those well-informed students who really know what branch they find interesting, then for you, branch does matter a lot.
  • There appears to be a lot of support for the “get out of your parents house; stay in a hostel/flat” directive. Parents and students, both, please heed this advice.
  • Amit has posted a list of non-IIT, Indian colleges that he considers “good”, based on his experience of hiring people from various colleges, and seeing how they performed. (Note however, the purpose of this article is not really to produce a ranking of colleges – that is too controversial and subjective. Form your own impressions of the quality of various colleges (from whatever sources you can), and then use the advice in this article to decide how to choose between those colleges.)
  • Ajay Garg points out that if you really need all kinds of details about engineering admissions (like lists of colleges, branches, cut-off marks, etc.) then go2engineering.com is a great site

Update 2: The contents of this article are now available as a Marathi language podcast, over at TechMarathi.com

Update 3: If you’ve cleared the IIT-JEE and are wondering which IIT to join, and which branch to choose, and whether to go for an IIT or NIT, this article by Prof. Dheeraj Sanghi of IIT-Kanpur might help. He updates it every year.

Update 4: All commentors who’re asking me about whether to choose college A or college B – Sorry, I have not really bothered to keep track of rankings and quality of colleges. So, the judgement about whether a college is significantly better than another college needs to be done by you using other sources of information. Most importantly, all those asking me which has better scope/prospects ECE, or CS, or IT, or whatever else, you missed the whole point of the article, didn’t you? The branch does not matter. If you can’t decide, just pick whichever branch has a higher cutoff. Some experienced commentors have suggested that interests are important, and students who have a strong interest in a particular branch, should choose that branch. Well, if you did have a strong interest in one branch, then you wouldn’t be here asking a question about which branch to take. If which branch to take is not very clear to you, then you don’t have an interest in any branch, and just take the branch with the highest cutoff in the best college that you can get into.

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124 thoughts on “How to choose an Engineering college & branch after 12th”

  1. Agree completely. I think Engg Branches don’t matter a whole lot. A good college is extremely important and should supersede any branch selection.

    I will also extended this same reasoning to decisions regarding selecting a Masters Program in U.S. Here again, getting into a good (ideally top 10 or top 20) university is lot more important than getting into a specific MS discipline.

    Amit

    1. G says:

      Excellent narration to throw light that the typical dilemma a +2 student would be faced with. A chemical engineer myself, who heads IT for a large organization, I couldnt agree more on this. What a good college does is provide the right environment and competition for students to seek excellence, which differentiates it from a not so good college.

  2. navin,
    i think this is really well-thought-out advice. I can relate to the adice abt college over anything else. When I passed out my 12th, I had the scores to get into the top state colleges, but due to some badly taken advice & other factors, had to stick with the 2nd choice. So I can relate well to it.
    About the medical vs engg. debate, I think alongwith liking issues, one needs to consider longterm lifestyle issues as well. Some professions like doctors, hospitality, pilots have very diff. lifestyles.
    oh! turned out to be a very long comment :-),
    aparna

  3. Neeran says:

    @Navin, @Amit, I wonder if we’re getting too old, if this advice is somewhat dated as a result…

    Does branch really not matter, these days? Or even back in our time? Perhaps it doesn’t matter from the point of view of making a ‘successful’ career — you can do that in any field, *provided* you work hard at it. But you’re far more likely to put in the hard work if you find the subject interesting.

    Your argument is that at 12th standard level, the student doesn’t know what’s involved in a particular field. True to an extent, but one does inherently have a ‘liking’ or a ‘dislike’ for certain fields. I knew — not just at 12th std. level, but probably around 8th/9th level — that I wanted to study “computers”. Or perhaps chemistry! Of course I had no clue what either would involve. But I knew I *did not* want to study mechanical / civil for example, or medicine, nor did I have any inclination for the arts. And I made the wrong tradeoff by your criteria — I gave up a seat in IIT-B (Chemistry, incidentally) because I wanted to do Computer Science, at a “good enough” college. Never regretted it.

    As you said, so many of our generation’s engineers ended up doing totally different things — why’s that? Not because they wouldn’t have been successful in engineering, but because they were more interested in others. Would’ve been better to study those other fields in the first place. I know someone who thought long and hard about doing Economics after 12th std., didn’t, got himself a Mech. Engg. degree, but later did a Ph.D. in Econ. and built himself a very successful career as an economist.

    My thought is that today’s 12th. standard kids are far better informed, or have access to far more information about the alternatives available to them. And there are many more alternatives as well. In addition, I think they’re more likely to have developed a liking for one field of study vs. another by this age. For them to follow their parents’ advice and do (a certain branch of) engineering or medicine might lead to “successful” but unfulfilling careers.

    1. navin says:

      @Neeran,

      • I would still argue that whether a student likes or dislikes a subject (within engineering) really depends upon who taught that subject (or, if nobody taught it, then how was the student first exposed to it) rather than any intrinsic match or mismatch between the student and the subject. One good prof can change a disliked subject into a great subject, IMO.
      • Just to be clear: my like vs. dislike argument does not extend outside engineering subjects. If you see yourself as an artist, I would not try to force you to do engineering. Same with medical vs. engineering.
      • I am not convinced that most of today’s 12th standard kids are much better informed. No doubt, some of them are – and they probably don’t need our advice :-). But, I would contend that a majority of them haven’t bothered to educate themselves and are completely confused, and unsure of what they want.

      I ended up writing this article after giving this advice to 2 different students in 2 days – and both of them told me they found the advice helpful because they were confused about the better-branch-vs-better-college trade-off.

  4. navin says:

    @Amit, You’re right about the fact that similar ideas apply when going for a Masters after BE/BTech. I’m going to write a detailed article on that case…

    @Aparna, Good point about the lifestyle issues when choosing other professions. You certainly need to think and consider whether you’re OK with the jet-setting travel for pilot/air-host(ess), or the 4-months-work-4-months-home routine of a merchant shippie, or the emergency-at-any-hour routine of (most) doctors.

  5. Foo Bar says:

    There are 15 IITs? Good lord, what rock have I been living under?

    Anyway – wholeheartedly agreed with everything, and the reason I’m posting this is because I was one of those kids who was hell-bent on doing CS in a lower-tier college in preference to a mainstream engineering branch in IIT. Fortunately, fate screwed my HSC marks to the extent that I couldn’t, and I joined IIT with ill grace.

    I fell in love with computers when I was 13, way before it was “fashionable” (my mother worried that my job opportunities would be too narrow – ha!) I switched back to software again, but in retrospect, it was *definitely* worth going to IIT in spite of branch mismatch. Oh and yes, double yes, do get out and stay in a hostel.

  6. Anand says:

    I agree with the remark that in 12th standard, you have the slightest clue of what each field has to offer. The reason being that till 12th, kids are practically mechanical. Mostly,you mug up stuff to secure better marks and keep aside your brain.

    Again, I agree to that fact that city matters. The exposure and options a city can offer is way much more than what a small town can.

    All in all, a good write up.

  7. Rajan Chandi says:

    Pretty good analysis.

    College does matter…but the branch can’t be ignored. If you like doing X..that’s part of you..but need to find out exactly what you love from the bottom of your heart.

    As per my opinion – One needs to find out what they really enjoy in their lives and choose something that will keep that light on. e.g. I was creative since I was a kid…I didn’t choose MBBS after XII Science..because I thought it was not a good idea to read a lot of books and loose my edge on Creativity. Moreover, I believed that It was not a good idea to collect money from people who already suffering from some kind of disease.

    My decisions might be wrong again. I chose the college that was near my home and not the best college I was able to get. The reason was ‘Independence’. I wanted to do my college my way…not like a school..I think the ‘BEST’ colleges would have destroyed my creativity by giving me ‘useless’ assignments. To be frank…College doesn’t matter too much as we have no Stanfords/Harvards in India which churns out a ton of billionaires 😉

    Although, Things may vary person to person…Good write-up overall.

  8. suyog says:

    Agree in totality with your article !
    I advised my younger brother to get in Govt. Engg college though he was getting only Civil there but that turned out to be great as other’s who got Comp, IT in not so good colleges struggled to get any job.
    About Medical Vs Engg, we need to also remember that you need to put in more duration in medical,(almost 2 years more) fact which I never liked.

  9. Useful article, but I believe it would make it more useful to bring in some more facets into discussion.

    Most students and parents seem to be very focused on getting in to the “best” branch (Computer Science, Electronics & Telecommunications, Mechanical, Chemical, Civil, etc.) Everybody wants to get into the “top” branch. Everybody wants to know which branch has the best “scope” in the future.

    This is misguided.

    Most certainly it is misguided. I can add at least one more reason why. Its the definition of “best”. “Best” generally is loosely decided based on some distilled community view which often hides far more than it reveals, even though I think most might agree that it primarily focuses on opportunity (to eventually make most money etc.). However “best” should be decided based upon a combination of Opportunity, Aptitude and Interest – and the latter two cannot be decided based upon a community perspective but only on a better understanding of the individual candidate. Typically one wants to choose an option which optimises this mix.

    If you actually are in a position to work out the intersection spot between these three well, I think branch does matter. However many of us take the long detour of taking one branch and then over a period of time finding another which better suits our aptitudes and interests. I suspect my insufficient competency in stating what follows in this paragraph, but I think some patterns of interest and behaviour can help us make out which might be better branches – eg. interest in numerical stuff is more likely to be helpful in CS, and specific aspects of other engineering branches (eg. Design in case of Mech Engg.), whereas high curiosity in scientific stuff might be more helpful for say Auto Engg, or an affinity towards a stronger memory or descriptive stuff may lend itself to Production Technologies etc. (Don’t take me on on this stuff – its indicative, you might have a different take on it).

    But the case I do make is given a reasonably known combination of Opportunity, Aptitude and Interest -> Branch matters and it may not be always the right thing to make it lesser important than the college. Citing my own example I took the detour via Mech Engg. (cos I couldn’t get admitted to CS), MBA to eventually write software for a living.

    What branch the student is interested in, is irrelevant.

    Not necessarily. Some students are more informed and insightful than others and in such cases it is very relevant.

    City also matters

    Maybe. But then maybe not. Again citing another experience, having studied at IIM Ahmedabad, I really don’t know if the end product had been any different if it was the same institute and profs and students but in a different small town (eg. IIM Jhumri Talaiya). IMO the city matters a squat. And in the few cases it does matter, it is of a far less relevance than the nature of the professors and the peer group. Another case in point – IIT KGP – which is 120 kms away from Calcutta and that used to be a huge huge distance in early days. Like in primary and secondary schools, its the peer group which is the dominant force in influencing attitudes and capabilities sometimes as dominant as the academics.

    1. navin says:

      @Dhananjay, @Neeran and @Vikram Karve:
      I agree that there might be some students who have had enough of an exposure to a particular branch that they know (with good reason) that they like a particular branch. In that case, I agree that branch is important. However, students should remember:

      • Make sure that you like a branch because you know something about that branch and what it involves. As Dhananjay points out, if the reason you want to choose a particular branch is because the “community consensus” is that it is a good branch, then that’s a bad reason to choose a branch.
      • Also, don’t assume that doing a degree in a branch will be very much like the corresponding subject in your 12th std syllabus. It will be very different. Find out more from people who have actually done their degree, and then decide

      As for my comments about “city matters”, I should have said that if college quality is roughly equal, then choose the better city. I don’t agree with @Dhananjay that city doesn’t matter, but it certainly does not matter as much as quality of the college & faculty.

  10. A big +1 to

    Also, please get out of your parents’ house. Stay in a hostel, or a rented flat with a bunch of your classmates, or something.

  11. Vikram Karve says:

    Good advice.
    Yes, the college and location does matter – especially for placement.
    About branch – maybe 12th is too early to decide a branch, but if one has a liking why not select what you like?

  12. vikram says:

    interesting topic and discussion

    Just a point totally diffn from the content

    Check the India map in your blog. I am sure you could find one which does not give one half of Kashmir to Pakistan and NE part to China.

    1. navin says:

      @vikram, that map does not “give one half of Kashmir to Pakistan and NE part to China.” It just simply differentiates between the undisputed boundaries and disputed boundaries. In any case, this is not the right forum for this discussion; a better place for this would be the discussion page for this map on wikipedia.

  13. siva says:

    navin sir
    you told that branch is not all that important but if i got not-so-good branch and not-so-good college what can i do?

    1. navin says:

      @siva, That’s a good question. It’s possible that for various reasons you might do badly in the entrance exams, and hence end up with a not-so-good branch in a not-so-good college. In that case, you should not let your college and your professors interfere with your education. Work hard. Learn from google. Learn from the free courses on MIT Open Courseware. Learn from the free courses put out by the IITs at NPTEL. Get smart people from industry to guide you. Do projects with industry. Work on some open source software. Start an internet startup. Really! You can do it. It costs less than Rs 5000 per year, and I know of students earning Rs. 50000 per month through their website alone at the end of 3rd year of engineering.

  14. Vipul says:

    I think its the best advice a student in Pune could get,who doesn’t have any clue even about what and how the colleges are in the city…

  15. Here’s my list of good engineering colleges (other than the IITs).. I used to suggest this list to our Recruiting Dept in the 1990s, when hiring. I also have many friends from these colleges listed below, who have done extremely well academically and professionally after their BE/BTech.

    [Note: I am not claiming this is a complete/exhaustive list.. feel free to add your comments about other good colleges..Also, the list is in no particular order!]

    RECs (not NITs)
    VJTI
    COEP
    Delhi College of Engg
    MS University Baroda
    UDCT
    Osmania Univ
    BITS Pilani
    Anna Univ

  16. Neeran says:

    @Navin:
    At the level of individual subjects (within a branch of engg.) certainly the professors have a big impact. If you’re studying CS, whether you end up as a database guy or an AI expert will depend on how well those topics were taught.

    But at the 12th std. level the choice is more coarse-grained, and should not be as influenced by 11th/12th standard teaching as by personal preference. I like Dhananjay’s formulation, ordered as Interest – Aptitude – Opportunity. A career is a ridiculously long time over which to forecast “scope” or Opportunity actually. If you have the Interest, you can overcome a shortage of Aptitude over that time, and even create your own Opportunity.

    Don’t get me wrong, I do agree overall with your criteria of good colleges and vibrant cities. But if the student isn’t clear on what field they’d enjoy (not just for 4 years, but over a career), they should first be resolving that confusion. My advice would be to start doing that early, during 11th std. at the latest: exploring, reading, experimenting, etc. so that it’s not a last minute decision based on your 12th std scores. Narrow it down to maybe TWO fields that interest you, and then let your scores decide which one you pick, based on tradeoffs like college/city.

  17. navin says:

    @Neeran, I definitely agree that students doing some exploration on their own (exploring, reading, experimenting, small projects) is a great way to resolve the confusion over what they find interesting.

  18. Yogesh Pathak says:

    Hello Navin,

    I wont be able to detail out my reaction to your article. Only one thing, I am rushing this to my nephew who is currently in dilemma along with his parents on “how an what to choose – branch, college, city”.

    So good work on putting your thoughts clearly.

    Regards,
    Yogesh

  19. Rohit says:

    Very well said for moving out of parent’s house.
    I feel the MAX someone should stay with parents in till their +2

    Many parents have this fear of child getting spoiled if he is out of home but I feel that if the values are inculcated in time, there is meager chance of getting spoiled.

    And today its not what you mug up & how big you score in exam, the value lies is how better you can present that and use it in career.

  20. sushrut says:

    @Amit

    I am not sure on what basis you have included Anna Univ and not Pune univ! Please clarify immediately!! 🙂

  21. sushrut says:

    Oops realized tone of the last comment was not that good and there is no way to delete it. Apologies 🙂

  22. Abhishek Pradhan says:

    I’d say the idea of going into an hostel should not necessarily be limited to after 12th. My initial aim was to get into the Indian Army, and post 10th I went to a Military School in Nashik, but my plans went awry and I landed up in IT, and am working in Microsoft 😛

    I learnt a lot in hostel life, not just in terms of sports or physical fitness, but camaraderie, leadership, self sustenance, academics and first and foremost discspline. If you do not inculcate discipline, you actually end up the wrong way or not in a manner befitting your later stages of life thru academics as well as professional fora.

    To learn more about the world and to be able to live in it in todays cruel times, a person necessarily has to spend time away from home, be it for academics, etc. Get out, move away from your family for some time and learn. You can always come back to your home, but life wont give you a second chance to suceed unless you are innately lucky.

    Not necessarily engineering, but I do believe that alternatives exist apart from pointing the article only towards a particular stream. Sciences & Arts for that matter: We have the best minds in academia here in India, some basic research would surely tell you who is where. Govt. Services, Analytical Streams also offer pretty qualitative curricula and more.

    I’d advocate alternative streams and not just engineering per se for a broader audience appeal.

  23. Manish says:

    @Navin : Thanks for this post; really getting to see some good discussions;

    The common method employed (for selecting a stream) by most students after 12th desirous of studying Engineering (do they have a choice) is the method of Elimination.

    My personal example:
    I hated drawing, considered it a waste of time : Ruled our Mechanical/ Civil Engineering; Had not even heard of Production Engineering or Mech Sandwich!

    I had a Computer Phobia, parents had advised against tinkering around such an ‘expensive’ device : Ruled out Computer Engineering;

    I was scared of High Voltages, ruled out Electrical Engineering;

    Disliked Chemistry since school days because of a bad experience with the Chemistry teacher, ruled out Chemical/ Polymer/ Petrochemical Engineering.

    The only choices left were Electronics/ E and TC.
    (Hadnt heard of other branches then)

    I did eventually pursue Electronics Engineering; and started liking doing things with Microcontrollers/ Microprocessors; and have ever since been working/ enjoying working in the Embedded Systems Domain!

    A friend of mine had also chosen to pursue Electrical Engineering (in the US) employing a similar method; a couple of semesters into the course he deduced that he wouldnt want to pursue a career in this field; so he opted for some Financial Courses; and started working as a Financial Consultant straight out of college;

    I guess we need to have some more flexibilty in selecting subjects while pursuing B.E; some Universities in India have started adopting this method; but its a far way off…

  24. sushrut says:

    Also please note that most engineering colleges will allow you to shift branch after first year. There will few people failing to reach 2nd year and if your first year marks are good then you can then shift branch. I personally got admit to electrical engineering and after first year shifted to Comp Sci.

  25. samir says:

    good practical advice. certainly better than what i usually provide, which is to say piously, “whatever you do, if you do sincerely and work hard, you will surely be successful”

    the one thing i usually advise engineering students is to make sure they learn programming in college because software can be a default career option if nothing else works out.

    i have a feeling that college is less important these days than in my time, which was 15 years back, especially in computer science and electronics, because in those days, lab and library facilities made the difference. these days, with the internet, access to information is easy, and also access to computers, free or cheap software, and in general cheap small kits and components let you pick up computer and electronics skills outside your college.

    good luck to all young people.

  26. neetu says:

    Hi,
    navin sir I just completed my 12th standed.I am in hostel.i want to my continue my engineering and also i want to another small skills.i don’t know what is that.please tell me what is the thing is good in hostels.

  27. Bhooshan says:

    Thanks Navin for a great article.
    I agree with you thoughts on choosing a college, branch, city and place of residence.
    I also agree that most >99% kids at 18 have very little idea of the world. their likes and dislikes are changeable with friends’ advice and latest newspaper articles. Few fortunate souls have a clear sense of direction and i can guarantee that they will not read this article ( at 18) or even ask anyone for advice on choosing their career paths.

    I left AFMC and joined Bharati Vidyapeeth Medical College because bullying turned me off and I realized that I can not spend rest of my life in such a culture. It was a radical and expensive decision and my parent supported my on this one. Today I have a good career, a very satisfying branch of medicine ( child psychiatry).

    I was very lucky to have very good teachers all along to facilitate the journey.

    So, in short, get the best college in a good city. If for some reason it does not work out, don’t sell your soul to the devil, keep the passion and keep trying hard. Nobody can blame you for that, ever !!

  28. Rahul says:

    I was looking for career options available for a student who hasn’t scored much in CET. What he should do if he is having 65+ % in 12th but less than 70 marks in CET. I want to talk to my cousin, so wanted some information. So please help !!!

  29. Shweta says:

    I agree with branch-doesn’t-matter, mainly because all engineering fields base themselves on basic logic and reasoning – so switching may not take too much. Another reason being that most students at 12th std stage do not know what they like or want, and choose fields majorly because they have seen someone do well in that field. Hence, going out to hostels, learning as much as you can in the field you have chosen and (if you figure it out) the field of your interest is a good thing to do.
    What I disagree to is the non-comparison between 12th and engineering. Engg is very much like 12th, just more focused in one particular field and a lot more practical. But the concept-learning and application including extension to creativity remain more or less the same. You may blame teachers for not teaching the subjects very well, but not the subjects IMO.

  30. Hi Rahul,

    If you truly believe that you must become an engineer to realize your dream and this result (CET) does not reflect your real potential, then prepare for one more year and appear again ! your past performance in exams and ability to put in effort irrespective of what your friends do should be your guiding points to make this decision.

    Good Luck.

  31. Vikram Karve says:

    What is more important – the college or the branch…?

  32. @Vikram

    If you believe the chicken came first, then its the college, else if you go with the egg, then the branch 🙂

  33. neetu says:

    what navin sir why are u don’t reply to my question?HEY,another guys please give me answer please.I just completed my 12th standed.I am in hostel.i want to my continue my engineering and also i want to another small skills.i don’t know what is that.please tell me what is the thing is good in hostels.

    1. navin says:

      @neetu:
      1. I have already included in the article my reasons for why students should stay in hostels.
      2. If you read the article and other comments, you will find a bunch of suggestions on how and what you should learn in addition to your engineering.

  34. Ajay Garg says:

    Dear Navin Ji,
    Nice Information which you have posted. But I think Student and other people would be more interested to know about exact postion of college and cut-of-list, college name, approved by AICTE, and Other important information about admission procedure. I recommand the website called as http://www.go2engineering.com. Kindly see this website and get solved your all queries about admission and college releted information on single click.
    🙂

    Have a Nice Day.

    Ajay Garg.
    ajaygarg2006@gmail.com
    9372259381

  35. Rainu says:

    I agree that the branch does not matter.
    Eventually it turns out to be so, but usually a student would want to choose a branch of their interest cause otherwise they might find the studies too boring.

    However, this is a very useful article for anyone completing their high school!

  36. swathi says:

    navin sir I just completed my 12th standed.I am in hostel.i want to my continue my engineering i don’t know what is engineering but i want to become softwareengineer for that reason which branch is suitable for me

    1. navin says:

      @Swathi, I suggest that you read the article again.

  37. Sekar V says:

    @ Navin:

    Excellent & timely article for me. My son is likely to get Metallurgy & Material Sciences or Chemical Engineering at VNIT, Nagpur (or the South NITs as the admission process goes along). Meanwhile, he has got a very good rank thro’ AIEEE quota in Maharashtra (he did not write CET there and hence not eligible for about 4 colleges like COEP, VJTI). But he’s sure to get in any other unaided and top colleges like Sardar Patel, Vivekanand, PICT, MIT, etc.

    His first preference is only Computer Science or else Chemical/Metallurgy & Material Sciences. He’s keen to do MS in Material Science in USA if he doesn’t join Computer Science (in which case, he’ll do MS in Computer Science).

    Just in case necessary, we found that placement in VNIT is available for both core and other industries like IT even for M & M Sc. stream. We understand that PICT, Pune is a top college in computer engineering and placement record is also fine.

    Our current thinking is that let him go to VNIT or any other decent NIT in Chemical/M & M Sc. and keep PICT – Comp Sc. as back-up. The reaon we feel is the peer group quality, their cosmopolitan nature, and overall academic & research ambience apart from the NIT brand.

    Kindly let us have your views on our proposal.

  38. Preetam Nath says:

    To tell you the truth, this is something my father has been telling me for sometime, and I was indeed confused, but had started to see reason in his talk with all the examples he had given me. And you hit the nail on the 5 years after graduation thing, same thing was told by my father.

    I’m a class XIIth student, and yes I’m definitely trying to get into a good college(and stick to a good city where exposure is more)…

    Your article is very good, and quite informative. WIsh my fellow coaching batchmates take the pains to read this out.

  39. Aum says:

    Navin Sir,
    I have a query!
    May I know how is the branch of power engineering?
    There is only one college in Maharashtra i.e.,National Power Training Institute(NPTI),Nagpur.
    Would I be able to make a good career by getting admitted to the institute?

  40. Aum says:

    Navin Sir,
    I have a query!
    May I know how is the branch of power engineering?
    There is only one college in Maharashtra i.e.,National Power Training Institute(NPTI), Nagpur.
    Would I be able to make a good career by getting admitted to the institute?

  41. Dani says:

    Sir can you explain the difference between BE & BTech.
    Which is best?

    1. navin says:

      @Dani,
      For all practical purposes, there is no difference between those two degrees (other than the difference in the college/university itself).

  42. Dear Navin and all,

    It was a feast to read this article and the comments.
    I am sure lots of confused souls will find solace here.

    I guess everyone goes through this confusion and with growing times, more dilemma should be expected with many more choices available wrt career.

    May be Punetech can play an important role here in two ways as I can foresee:

    1: A two month field trip (after Xth exmas), that actually provides exposure to as many possible engineering streams in the form of lectures from industry experienced engineers, hands on projects (tiny ones) well explained to the students after Xth std, industry visits, a day or ever a week with the people at the entry level, discussions, open house brainstorming etc.

    2: Informal voluntary lectures in the schools round the year explaining very basic stuff like what, how where of each engineering streams.( Ideally this should be initiated by schools. )

    In the end end, all that matters is clarity of mind and following your heart and passion. Try not to follow the mass unless you can excel ahead. And from my personal experience I can tell, its never too late :).

    Thanks

    Madhurie Singh

  43. Nikhil Pethkar says:

    i have done b.e. in indutrial electronics. is it possible for me to do m.e. in mechanical. kindly reply for the same.

  44. navin says:

    @Madhurie,
    I think it would be great if someone did both the things you’ve mentioned. I agree it would be helpful to lots of students.

  45. Mitali L. says:

    I didn’t get through any of the IITs this year and also messed up CET big time. I’m getting Mech in a ‘not so good’ college. I agree with the part about having enough determination to be able to shine even in muck, but would that be a better option than taking a drop and giving the JEE next year? Or would it be a stupid decision to leave what I have to try and get something that I might not necessarily get?

    1. navin says:

      @Mitali, in my opinion, there is so much competition for the JEE these days, and ranks are decided on the basis of such minor differences (or, actually, no difference in marks at all), that there is not guarantee of getting into any IIT. Your being good is not guarantee that you’ll get in. So, my opinion would be to go ahead with your Mech degree and then focus on doing well. Do outside projects (right from first year if you can!!), study from Google, Wikipedia, MIT OCW, etc.

  46. Mitali L. says:

    Also, I’d like to ask if tuitions are necessary if you get into some avg. college?
    Some friends of mine who have been class junkies since kindergarten have already joined tuitions in spite of getting into really good colleges which makes me wonder how the hell I’m gonna manage without classes in some deserted college.

    1. smiley says:

      Hey Mitali…,
      If u Going for average college then yes tutions are compulsory, if u cant manage then go through online classes notes . there are lots of education sites which provide details, notes, classes, and more assignments. it will be useful to you

  47. asutosh says:

    yes i agree ….but i dont know wat to do coz parents dont agree to choose do field m intrested …and so i have joined computer sci……engg which i dont wanted to do…ya m intrested in animation….so mah parentns asked me to do b.tech coz da degree matters so i have choosen 4 cse….i dont wat to do…plz help me how to make up wid cse course …and tips ….

  48. NARESH KUMAR DALAI says:

    Dear Navin,

    I agree most of your suggestions.As parent we would like
    to say ,we would suggest my son/daughter to takeup a
    course ,having demand ,good income,minimum time of completion, better career,minimum or no transfer, course
    required to get jobs nearby our locality etc,no or less political interference etc.
    Now orissa is one of the most industrial advanced state
    of India. We feel Engineering course is better than Medical. But What we feel my son is inclined towards
    medical course. kindly suggest us.

    1. navin says:

      @Naresh, you said that you would like a course that is: “having demand, good income, minimum time of completion, better career, minimum or no transfer, course
      required to get jobs nearby our locality etc, no or less political interference etc.” Engineering and Medical both streams fit this description. So what is the problem with letting him do Medical if he has an inclination for that and can get into a good college?

  49. Arpit Bang says:

    COEP is far better than VIT because COEP is the one which is being thinked for being a IIEST……

  50. Ankur Tiwari says:

    “So, here’s my (controversial) advice: if you are getting a not-so-good branch in a very good college, vs. a good branch in a not-so-good college, you should definitely choose the not-so-good branch in the very good college. I would definitely pick Metallurgical Engineering in IIT-Bombay, over Computer Science in MIT.”

    Sir, I suppose you meant VIT and not MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) in the above!

    1. navin says:

      No @Ankur, I meant “MIT as in Maharashtra Institute of Technology, Pune.”

    2. megha singh says:

      Your interest n caliber matters a lot, just go for branch of ur interest n wrk hard tht will help,coz taking admision in clg with the branch in which u r nt interested in may create performance degradation.taking placements n improving urself technically is all up to you.

  51. Vikram Karve says:

    I agree with Ankur. Getting into an IIT is very important today, irrespective of the branch. If you don’t like the branch you can always do your MBA and become an investment banker. It’s most lucrative to follow the IIT-IIM route to success and prosperity. That’s what most IITans do anyway.

  52. rakesh surkar says:

    ya i do agree but i need an advice . i habe compleated my 12th & looking 4 a good emg collage on pune & i scored 52% in cbse board which is very low. so please advice me a good colage that can give me admisiom on cet or aieee basis . please do advice me

  53. Aiman Khan says:

    Hmmmm……Very irritating to see no mention of research options for those interested in engineering.Does passion for a subject not matter?Is money everything to you folks?yeah..earn truckloads of money,marry,have kids and live happily ever after.The author needs to realize that there are some students whose idea of meaningful existence is a bit different.

    1. Navin Kabra says:

      @Aiman, Could you please elaborate on how your comment is related to the content of this article? “Research options for those interested in engineering”?! How is this relevant to someone looking for a college after 12th std? There are no “research” options at the 12th std. stage, that comes after graduation. As for “Does passion for a subject not matter?” – I believe I’ve addressed that sufficiently in the article. The summary is that if you’re one of those rare individuals who in 12th have an informed idea of what you’re interested in, then go ahead and follow your passion. But I believe 99% of 12th Std. students, including the toppers, and including the ones who think they’re interested in a subject, have no clue what they’re really interested in. As for “money” and “meaningful existence” etc, you lost me there. Maybe you should just read the article again, carefully.

  54. Vikram Karve says:

    Ask yourself: why do you want to study engineering?
    Do you want to be a proficient engineer? Do you love technical stuff? Then choose the branch you like and a college which focuses on technical expertise like one of the older established engineering colleges. Maybe you will do an M. Tech. or MS or even Ph.D. later and get into R&D.
    Or are you studying engineering to get “good” placement (“good” in terms of salary)- then choose the most “lucrative” in demand branch and also the college which has the best track record of high salary placements. I’ll tell you one thing for sure – if you choose this path, sooner or later, you will think of doing MBA to tread into the more lucrative business management disciplines and leave behind your core engineering.

  55. priyanka says:

    hi Navin sir,
    i am very fascinated with your views actually i have just completed my 12th & was trying to find out guidance like u gave here
    The things i like d most in ur article & i agree the most r
    #CITY ALSO MATTERS-
    (doing a degree in Pune or Bombay, is, in my opinion, clearly better than doing it in a college in Amravati.)
    #THE BETTER ADVISE-
    -if you are getting a not-so-good branch in a very good college, vs. a good branch in a not-so-good college, you should definitely choose the not-so-good branch in the very good college.
    -about staying in hostels
    thank sir thanks a lot………….

  56. Aiman Khan says:

    Oh yeah, no research options for students after class 12?Get a life….IISc,India’s best research school has a UG program.IITs have been running 5 year integhrated research oriented courses for those cracking IIT-JEE for years.

    And of course you lost me on the money and meaningful existence thing.Kind of reinforces my belief of the prototypical Indian…I have read your article very well and there’s nothing for those courses even though they are available by the same qualifying exams.So you have an answer why?

  57. Harsh Jhawar says:

    Hello Sir,

    I have got a rank in IITJEE this year but that is somewhere towards the end. I might get certain streams in IT-BHU and ISM-DHANBAD, but those streams wont be the core ones.

    On the other hand i m expecting a rank below 3000 in AIEEE which will enable me to take up any stream and in any of the best NIT’s.

    I want your suggestion regarding this. Should I opt for something like Mining Engineering or Ceramic Engineering in IT and ISM or should I go for the core ones in NIT Warangal and Trichy?

    I might also get Agriculture and Food Processing Engineering in IIT Kharagpur. Should I consider this as an option instead of NIT’s just because it is in an IIT?

    Please reply asap.

    Regards

    Harsh Jhawar.

    1. Navin Kabra says:

      @Harsh,
      Unfortunately, your situation seems to be rather tricky. While IIT-Kharagpur is clearly ranked the highest, as far as I understand the other colleges you mentioned (IT-BHU, ISM-Dhanbad, top IITs) are not much further down the list from IIT-Kharagpur, so the choice is not obvious. If you could get into one of the metro IITs (Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai) I would say that the combination of IIT+city was clearly better than the others. However, if that is not the case, your choices seem comparable to me.

      Here are some thoughts:
      ISM-Dhanbad is unique and the best in the country at what it does – mining. If you think you might find that area interesting – go for it. Nothing to beat best in country + unique field. Otherwise I would find out more about faculty and students of Food Processing Engineering at IIT-Kharagpur. If the impression you get is that there are at least some faculty and some students actually interested in their subject, then I’d go with IIT-Kharagpur simply because it’s clearly the best college on the list (and your hostel mates will be some of the smartest kids in the country). Otherwise, I would go with “core” stream in one of the best NITs.

      Good luck with your AIEEE results.

      1. Harsh Jhawar says:

        Thanks sir! I would be highly obliged if u could find out the details of Food Processing Engineering in IIT Kharagpur.

        Something which matters to me is brand value. ISM Dhanbad, even though it comes under IIT’s, is not as famous as the NIT’s. People say and even you have mentioned it in your article that people switch their streams when they take up jobs. If someone takes up mining engineering, their scope gets restricted. On the other hand if we have the core courses in NIT’s, then the scope is wide and also the pay will be better I guess. This is another big confusion in my mind.

        What do you have to say on architecture engineering? Its one of the option I can opt for in IIT KGP but my mind does not allow me to go for it. It would be like studying science for two long years in Class XI and XII and then switching over to something that is not pretty much related to science.

        Please help.

        1. Navin Kabra says:

          @Harsh:

          1. Details of Food Processing you’ll need to find out yourself.

          2. If brand value is important to you, IIT-Kharagpur is the clear choice – it has way more brand value than any of the other colleges you’ve listed.

          3. Architecture engineering – I don’t have much of an idea; but I would expect that architecture would have lots of maths and material science. I’m surprised that you think it is not related to science.

          4. Don’t worry so much about pay now. Do a good job in whatever you’re doing and the pay will take care of itself.

          1. Harsh Jhawar says:

            Its not that brand value is the only thing which matters, but if I dont take up a stream in IIT then it would be like working hard to get a rank in it and then not getting admitted to it.

            As a lay man about architecture, I knew that it is more of drawing based that science. Obviosly maths is there.

            I want your final opinion.
            Mining Engineering in ISM Dhanbad or
            Architecture Engineering in IIT KGP or
            Electrical and Electronics Engineering in NIT Warangal.

            What would u suggest among the three?

  58. Ali Syed says:

    Dear Sir,

    My rank in IIT-JEE is 500. I have the below options:

    1. “Engineering Physics” @iitb.
    2. “Microelectronics” @iitm.

    Which one is better for me?
    What do you think?

  59. Ali Syed says:

    Dear Sir,

    Thanks for your reply. I got your e-mail.
    Now I am clear about my choice.

  60. SONAL says:

    This is the most helpfull article have ever read.And the most interesting is that I agree to all the ideas……..all the suggestions really worth….

  61. SONAL says:

    Well I have to choose the branch among
    1)CS
    2)IT
    3)ELECTRICAL
    4)MECHANICAL
    Please suggest me to choose which branch.I am not interested in doing programming at all.

    Can I do better in IT than CS because I heard that IT does not include whole of Computer but has topics of ELECTRONICS also.

    1. Navin Kabra says:

      @Sonal,
      1. How do you know you are not interested in doing programming? I have a feeling you’re mistaken (see my thoughts about “interests” in the article)
      2. If you’re not interested in doing programming, I think you should not do any engineering degree. In today’s world, all engineering disciplines involve programming.

  62. paul says:

    navin sir,nice article.sir,i passed my 12th with 92% in pcm and got some average marks at state engg entrance exam. iam a slow learner,not a brilliant one.am planning to choose EEE cause i like the branch.will it be hard for me?i am sure that i will work hard.also would you please specify the things to become a good engineer?

    hope u will reply soon..

    1. Navin Kabra says:

      @Paul, my friend an IITian who barely managed to get his degree, but is now doing extremely well in his career has these bits of advice (which I agree with):

      • If you think you know what you want, go for it. What better time to follow your dream than in the safety of college?
      • If you don’t mind challenging yourself, and are willing to work hard, go ahead and take the most difficult branch you can get into. Things will work out fine
      • If you don’t know what you want, then choose the best college and best city you can get into. Exposure to a big city is important

      I hope this helps in your decision.

  63. sakshi says:

    hello sir,
    I have just completed 12th std with the Computer Science as an additional subject.I was no good in doing CS programming in my school…

    Actually I think I didn’t get any teacher who could develop my interest in that subject.I did my level best to learn it myself but still not satisfied..

    Can I do well in CS or IT in engineering if I would get right teachers? or should I change my branch..
    Suggest me what should I opt for CS or IT??

    1. Navin Kabra says:

      @Sakshi, it’s difficult to tell without having enough details, but I do think:
      1. If you’re doing engineering you will definitely be doing programming sooner or later…
      2. If you do like science or maths, then there’s a good chance that you’ll like programming is taught properly.
      3. However, there is no guarantee that you will be taught properly – it totally depends on which college you go to
      4. If you don’t like science or maths or programming, you definitely shouldn’t be doing engineering

      Sorry, can’t be more helpful in your situation.

  64. sakshi says:

    I am getting the top college of my state.My parents want me to choose among CS or IT.

    If later I could not do programming well then is IT will be more usefull to me than CS? coz IT has less programming part than CS.

  65. Abhay says:

    hello navin ji!
    sir I am in a confusion. i cant choose between IIT – Kharagpur (civil) and IIT-Bombay(metallurgy and material science). I like civil as involves constuction, machinary and mechanics and dislike metallurgy as it involves studying about properties of materials, ceramics, polymers, metal extraction and above all chemistry.
    please help me!

    1. Navin Kabra says:

      @Abhay, If the institutes are comparable (as in this case), and choice of branch is unclear to you, go with the better city – in this case Bombay…

  66. Anshu pathak says:

    Very nice article!!!
    But still I have a question..
    if I get into not so good college then you have advised in your article “try to get guides/mentors/projects from industry ”
    Can you tell something more about “projects from industry”..like how and what to do to get one project?

    1. Navin Kabra says:

      @Anshu, meet people from industry and tell them that you’re interested in doing projects. They might not take you seriously at first (because there are too many students who say they want to do projects, but disappear after that). But if you persist, you’ll find many people interested. Do some small project on your own, and show that to industry people – then they’ll give you more interesting projects to do. To meet people from industry, find out about tech events happening in your city and attend them – and then be “forward” enough to go and introduce yourself to the people speaking and/or attending the event.

  67. Neeraj says:

    Hello Navin Sir,

    I wanted to know that how much does exposure matters.
    I am getting NIT Raipur and my home is in Raipur.
    My parents are asking me to stay in home.
    My parents are very protective and still treat me like I am a little kid.
    So I want to go to College hostel but my elder sister (who is in the same college) says that you won’t be able to study in the hostle because of its non-serious environment, she tells me that hostel students drink.
    What should I do?

    1. Navin Kabra says:

      @Neeraj, I have absolutely no question that you should stay in a hostel. Yes, hostel students drink – but that does not mean you have to drink. There are lots of people staying in hostels who don’t drink. Yes, hostel has some people who are not serious and don’t study, but it also has people who are very serious and are quite good at studies. You’ll get to do both, and balance studies with other activities. Most importantly, you need to get out into the world so that you are exposed to other styles of thinking (i.e. other than your parents), and you’re taking day-to-day decisions on your own, and you’re living in a less protective environment than your home, so you learn to deal with conflict, and different types of people.

      Hostel, without a doubt.

  68. Harsh Jhawar says:

    Sir,

    I have a doubt. Which one should I choose among ECE and EEE if I get them both in one the best colleges in bangalore? Consider the interest factor and future prospects.

    What would you suggest among ECE in RV or RAMIAH in Bangalore and EEE in NIT WARANGAL OR TRICHY?

    Please help.

    1. Vikram Karve says:

      @ Harsh – ECE is a better bet, any day

  69. nikhil says:

    well… now iam nt bothered abt d college bt i jus wanted to knw abt two groups!
    i like cse the most! and nxt preference goes to ece….!
    and many say dat cse guys has less job oppurtunities and low salaries cozz of more members!
    and also many say dat ece has d bright future and u’l hav a nice placement!
    BUT I LIKE COMPUTER SCIENCE ALOTT…!!
    WATT TO DO? IM INA GREAT CONFUSION!
    IF WE DO CSE WE HAVE TO ONLY SATISFY WID SOFTWARE JOBS!
    BUT IF WE DO ECE WE CAN GO FOR ELECTRONICS AS WELL AS SOFTWARES…!!
    HELP!!

    1. Navin Kabra says:

      @Nikhil, You’re missing the complete point of the article. Especially, if you cannot decide between branches, then branch does not matter. Just pick the one which has higher cut-off marks.

  70. priya says:

    respected sir,
    i m facing a dilemma either to choose branch 4 college or college 4 branch
    actually i m gettin topmost college of my state wid IT branch and if i apply 4 2nd topmost college, i ll get any branch i want..
    so my que is., is IT a secure branch?
    is there a lot of scope in it?
    or should i prefer 2nd college wid othr branches lik electricl, eee, mech, etc..
    i am more intrested in electrical bt actually i hv no idea wt r d courses included under IT..
    Pls help me out sir..

    1. Navin Kabra says:

      @Priya, It all boils down to the difference in quality between top ranked college and 2nd ranked college. If, in your estimation, the difference is not much, then go for whatever branch you like in the 2nd college. If the difference is significant, then go for IT in the top college.

      1. priya says:

        sir actually diffierence is not vry wide bt also it cnt be ignored..i personally want to get into d topmst since its glory is famous..and vry few candidates get chnce 2 get in it coz of vry few seats..bt 2nd one has comparativly more seats so there ll be a mix of all studnts.. bt in d 1st one,all filtered studnts wid a vry good study envrnmnt will be ensured..
        so my que is is it a secure branch sir??
        coz i wnt to knw,shud i go 4 IT coz it has a better scope?? or i shud sacrifice dat college jst coz IT is nt a secure brnch nd shud tak anyothr brnch in 2nd college, jst considering abt job securty???.. w8 4 ur guidance sir..

        1. Navin Kabra says:

          @Priya,
          Don’t worry so much about job security. All branches have good scope (that’s why they exist as a branch) if you work hard and smart, and do it from a well-known college. Re-read the “branch is not all that important” section of the article carefully.

          1. priya says:

            yes sir, i gone thrugh thm carefully n i thnk i ll be personally contented if i study in d bst college n im damn sure i ll work evn more hard n nw ,as u said, evry brnch has its own scope, so i m feeling inclined towards IT nw..jst havin faith in u n dis amazing article,, bt if i deviate again frm my decision, i ll ask 4 ur help again, may be wen my counsellin dates will be approaching..
            thnks alot sir..
            nw its clear to me dat no brnch can be
            under-estimated,, success lies in d fact dat hw mch we effort on a particular brnch..
            so i decided to opt 4 IT in d topmst college..
            may b i cn deviate.., bt i ll ask 4 ur help n tell u my final decision..

          2. Navin Kabra says:

            @Priya, OK.

            Also, I would strongly suggest that when you’re asking for advice from anybody who’s more than 7 years older than you are, you should type full English words with correct grammar. Most people in the 25+ age group find it very irritating to read the kind of English that you’ve used, most will form a very negative impression of you and your capabilities (unfairly, I assume), and some might even use this as an excuse to ignore you.

            This advice applies to all those who use sms-speak in e-mails and internet forums.

          3. priya says:

            ohh i am extremely sorry for that..
            i will take care of it right from now onwards..
            actually today ,after deciding, when i told my seniors about it, they said that IT may not prove very secure for my future as its market often faces ups and downs..
            so, again i found a reason to deviate..
            please do a little more help as it is a very important decision for my future,
            should i really trust IT or should i kill my desire to be in the topmost college and should prefer the 2nd college,though the difference in studing environment,between both the colleges is quite pronounced and i cant ignore it….
            can you suggest me something about it??

          4. Navin Kabra says:

            @Priya, go with the college. Stop worrying about scope. If you’re good (i.e. combine ability with hard work), scope wont be a problem. If you’re missing one of the ingredients (most likely hard work/discipline), then scope will be a problem irrespective of which branch you choose.

            (Note: you’re still not capitalizing the starts of your sentences. That is also difficult to read and irritating. I went through a phase where I used to write only in lowercase, but over time I’ve realized that it’s not worth it – it irritates some people, and you don’t really get anything in return.)

          5. priya says:

            I am grateful to you for your rectifications sir..
            Now its quite clear to me that I have to give preference to college not to branch, if I possess the potential to work hard..
            Well, now if I will get either CS or IT, I will study in the top college..
            The most influential part of your article is(acc.to me), we dislike a subject just because we’hv been taught that subject by a bad teacher..
            Thank you sir..
            I also read about you, since you too are a CS student, and that too, from IIT Mumbai, I can definately trust you and believe that CS and IT also have scope like other branches, so I dont need to worry anymore.. thank you sir

  71. utkarsh says:

    sir,

    i am gettin IT in MIT and E&C in singhad(vadgaon)……. and i find both the branches fascinating… wht should i choose?? MIT or singhad (plz consider the scope in future)……. waitin for the reply

  72. Harsh Jhawar says:

    Sir,

    U dindn’t reply to my question posted on 16th June. Plz do so. I’ll be highly grateful.

    1. Navin Kabra says:

      @Harsh, see “Update 4” at the end of the article.

  73. Harsh Jhawar says:

    Sorry, i read the article long back so forgot abt it. Anyway thanks!!

  74. gopinath says:

    Sir, a very good article for the 12th passed student in going further.I ama parent and i think it is one of the best article for a student to think on deciding his future coarse. thank you

  75. anmol says:

    sir i am so confused in selecting the branch and my family says to take mechanical or civil and i want to take electronics and comm. so what should i have to do???

    1. Navin Kabra says:

      @Anmol, If you read the article again, you’ll see that I have very clear views on choice of ‘branch’.

  76. Vikram Karve says:

    Anmol: Select Electronics and Communication Engineering, any day.

    1. priya says:

      sir if i have an option to chose between telecom electrical and computer science…in colleges A B AND C…NOW all the three colleges are in the state rank of say 3,4 and5 or 6..i can get tc in coll A..may be, if not for sure i would get eee or tc in coll B..and ya any of the 3 branches in coll C…giving importance to placements and further studies which would be the right choice…between i have also heard that if u were not in iit’s or nit’s…core branches would be good to choose

  77. sunny says:

    If you want to know details of Engineering Colleges in Maharashtra like Cut off,List of Branches,Fees and many more then Getadmission is best option
    Check this link http://www.getadmission.in

  78. Navin Kabra says:

    @Gaurav, sometimes you can, but you can really rely on that because it depends upon a lot of factors, including your first year performance, so you might not be able to get it. Also, I assume the rules are probably different from state to state and college to college so you should check with the college you’re interested in for exact rules.

  79. Atul says:

    Govt. Engg Amravati (Autonomous) or PICT for E&TC
    Sir please reply soon. I’m really really confused. I have to fill up the option form on 22-8-2011.

    ( cutoff of Govt. Amravati is higher than PICT. I’m really confused because PICT is in Pune and has a reputation but its private. )

    which one should I choose????
    Please reply soon.

  80. Atul says:

    Also, I don’t think I have what it takes to survive in a big metropolitan (expensive) city. I feel like, instead of barely completing my degree from some big city college (i.e. Pune or Mumbai) I can do much better in a small town Govt. Engg college. Am I doing the right thing?
    And yes, I have lived in a hostel all my life so its not like I’m trying to do it from my parents house or anything.
    Also, I’m not a big fan of private Engg colleges. Are State Govt. Engg colleges (i.e. Maharashtra Govt. ) any good?
    Please reply.
    (P.s. I’m a diploma student, I can’t get into IIT’s or NIT’s)

    1. Navin Kabra says:

      Atul, some state govt colleges are good and some are not. I don’t know much about Amravati college. In PICT you’ll have at least a few good profs, and a few groups of good/motivated students, and a few enthusiastic alumni to support you if you’re interested in doing something more than just the minimum required for studies. But unfortunately, I can’t make financial decisions for you.

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