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AIIMS Proposes Scrapping Interviews for PhD Selection to Enhance Transparency and Research Impact

AIIMS, the All India Institute of Medical Sciences, is considering a proposal to eliminate interviews from the PhD selection process. The aim is to introduce greater transparency by making the selection based solely on a written exam. In addition, AIIMS plans to establish 40-50 PhD Institute Fellowships, similar to the Prime Minister’s Research Fellows scheme, to promote impactful research. To fund this initiative, a budget of Rs 200 crore has been proposed, pending approval from AIIMS and the Government of India’s statutory committees.

The suggested reforms for the PhD selection process and Institute Fellowship were put forth by AIIMS administration. During discussions with faculty, PhD students, and scientists, it became evident that reforming the selection process and introducing an in-house funding mechanism were crucial for fostering high-quality research and improving AIIMS’ NIRF rankings in research.

According to the proposal, the selection process should be objective, transparent, and rely on a written examination consisting of multiple-choice questions (MCQs) and objective structured clinical examination/objective structured practical examination (OSCE/OSPE). Interviews would be eliminated at all stages of the selection process. The memorandum also recommends conducting the PhD entrance examination twice a year, along with the DM/MCh entrance examination, at various centers across the country.

The academic section has been instructed to examine the proposal and initiate further discussions in the Staff Council, Academic Committee, and Standing Finance Committee to facilitate the timely implementation of these proposed reforms.

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