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Is it New IITs or Old NITs: What’s the better option?

While we all know, the dream to get into one of the IITs is common among the Engineering aspirants and the preparation starts from an early phase. Some start the IIT preparation from their school even before stepping into class 11th and a major chunk starts dreaming of IIT from the time they get promoted to class 11th. While this is the craze for IITs, it is not less for NITs. While the entrance is the same for both the colleges, most of the students feel that getting into one of the IITs will carve better career options for them than when they get into NITs. While we can’t point directly at which one is better, a comparison can do better in bringing out the difference rationally.

It is sad that JEE Main and JEE Advanced are the two phased entrances that check one’s credibility to join the new IITs or old NITs. Which one is at the superior end? Let’s find that out.

  • Number of the colleges: There are 23 IITs in India while there are 31 NITs which makes NIT bag more students every year compared to IIT. As NITs are spread across India and the number is more, more students from different parts of the country would prefer to get into an NIT that is close to their city although it is the rank that will decide. On the other hand, for IIT, students won’t mind taking a plunge even to a different country.
  • The Methodology of Teaching: While the methodology of teaching won’t be an iota of difference, owing to better faculties and experienced ones in both the colleges; however, different undertakings by IITs with institutions of repute like BARC, ISRO, DRDO etc. gives an upper hand to IITs.
  • Location: Most of the new IITs are located in the metros which have tremendous reachability to important places like the hospitals, road transport, air transport and other forms of recreational points. When we check on the old NITs, they are situated on the outskirts and barely have any access to these important places.
  • Infrastructure: As the new IITs have been on the rise, more importance has been given to the infrastructure that adds a point of attraction for the students as well as parents and faculties. Old NITs are slightly lesser in praise when it comes to the infrastructural development. Their buildings and campuses are not as vast and vibrant like that of the new IITs which don’t look less than any shopping mall. The pedagogy, as well as, the look of the new IITs has made them popular among the Engineering aspirants.
  • Global recognition fuels placement: IITs have, no doubt, become a brand and have made it to the international list of top engineering colleges. This makes it a key point for the placement companies to choose IITs more when compared to NITs. This way, the creamy layer is already churned and top companies hire students from IIT at a higher package than that of NITs. The average package offered to a B.Tech student of IIT is somewhere between Rs 44,000 to Rs 48,000 approximately while for the same graduate program in NITs, it is somewhere between Rs 39,000 to Rs 43,000 approximately. This is as per the last five years’ placement records.
  • Faculty: This is one point that appears to be the same in terms of quality in both the colleges; however, the gaps are yet to be filled. Both IITs and NITs have a shortage of faculty in various branches and it is a serious concern for the Engineers to be.
  • Startups: Startup is the new anthem of the country and IITs seem to be following it dedicatedly. Many startups by IITians are noteworthy as so are the startups by NITs. Let’s have a sneak peek.
Startups by IITians Startup by NITians
The very popular Flipkart by Sachin Bansal and Binny Bansal, Anurag Dikhsit’s PartyGaming, Ajit Singh’s Aryaka, Infosys co-founded by N.R Narayana Murthy and much more K.R Sridhar’s Bloom Energy, Cozee Homes by Ajay Kumar and Ankit Oberoi, Satya Prabhakar’s Sulekha and much more


  • Seats: The total number of seats in undergraduate programs of NITs is 19,000 as against approximately 35,000 in IITs and the total number of seats in post graduate programs in NITs is 8050 as against approximately 25,000 in IITs.
  • Ranking: This is something that every student considers before choosing any Engineering college. When you check this, IIT wins the battle with the top five ranks. NIT’s best one NIT Trichy ranks 15th on the list. The NIRF ranking of IIT is the top and most of the top 10 positions while it is 11th for NIT.

After all these speculations, it is up to a student to differentiate between among good, better and the best. IITs have been winning the race in almost all the aspects while NITs have all the ingredients but the garnishing is missing.

Academically, there is not much difference but the rank may put one to thought.


Author Bio:- Aditya Singhal is the co-founder of www.askIitians.com, an online coaching platform for IIT JEE, Medical and School Entrance exams. It is his passion and vision to help the engineering and medical aspirants that he along with his co-founder started with this venture. He had worked with Kurt Salmon Associates, a reputed American Management Consultancy.

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