HSEE IIT Madras

Humanities and Social Sciences Entrance Examination (HSEE ) for IIT Madras

The Humanities and Social Sciences Entrance Examination (HSEE) is an examination conducted by the IIT Madras. The HSEE can be written by students who have completed XII and is an examination conducted to offer admission to students to 5 years integrated Master of Arts program where the first two years of the program is the same, but in the last three years, the students get an opportunity to specialize in either MA Development Studies or MA English Studies. There are a total of 52 seats for the course, 26 in each discipline. Every year around 5000 students write the HSEE examination out of which the ranks up to 500-600 students get offers in various categories owing to the heavy movement of the waiting list for the course.  In the year 2019, 368 girls and 213 girls got joining offers for the course.

Students who wish to pursue the integrated MA course at India’s top university will have to appear in the HSEE test and qualify the cut off to get admission. The cut-offs are very high and only the top-ranked students get into IIT Madras integrated MA course. The exam is conducted once every year on online more.

HSEE for IIT | Sections 

HSEE is conducted online as well as pen and paper mode. The HSEE question paper has two parts – Part I and Part II. Part I is multiple choice questions type test which is conducted online. Part II is a pen and paper-based test which is conducted right after the candidates complete the Part I test. The total time for the entire paper is 3 hours. Part I will have questions from English and Reading Comprehension, Analytical Skills, Quantitative Aptitude, General Studies, History, Environmental Studies, and Ecology. It is very important for the students to have an overview of the exam pattern and syllabus to be able to prepare well for the test.

HSEE | Examination Pattern

HSEE exam is conducted partly in computer-based mode and partly in pen and paper-based mode. The entire paper has to be completed in one sitting. Students will be given three hours to complete the whole HSEE question paper. However, there is a time restriction for each section.

The HSEE exam has 2 parts – Part I and Part II. Part is an MCQ based test. It is an online test. For each question, students will get four options out of which only one option is the correct answer. Candidates have to select the right answer on their computer screen. Students will also get a chance to review any questions later by marking the questions with the review button. They can also change the answer option later for any question even after saving another option for the first time. A student can navigate through the questions with the help of the panel to the right side of your computer screen.

Students will be given 150 minutes to attempt the Part I section of the HSEE examination. Part II will have to be completed in the remaining 30 minutes of time. In the second paper, the students will be asked to write essays on current important topics or on any general topic related to history, environment, or any major news event in India or the world. The language of both sections of the paper is English. There is no negative marking in the HSEE examination.

In the Part I section of the paper 25% of questions will be asked from English language and comprehension skills, 25% of questions are of quantitative ability, and rest 50% of the questions consist of general knowledge.

Exam modePart I – online

Part II – pen and paper mode
Exam TimePart I – 150 minutes

Part II – 30 minutes
Language of examEnglish
Mode of examPart I – MCQ

Part II – Essay

HSEE | Examination Result announcement

The HSEE exam results are released online on the official website of the HSEE examination. The result of HSEE examination consists of a merit list. The merit list contains the name of the candidates, roll number, and the total marks scored in the test. The merit list has names of only those candidates who have scored more than the cut off marks. Other than this a separate rank list is also released for general, OBC, SC, ST and PWD candidates. Please note that separate scorecards containing the marks of each candidate will not be set to the students.

If there is a tie between two candidates then it is resolved by following a set of tie-breaker rules set by the conducting institute that is IIT Madras. The tie-breaker rules are as follows:

  • A candidate who has scored higher marks in part II of the paper will be awarded a higher rank.
  • A candidate who has more marks in the General Studies section of part I of the HSEE exam paper is given a higher rank.
  • If the tie persists then the candidate who has scored more in the Quantitative section of part I of the HSEE exam paper is given a higher rank.

However, if the tie remains which is the less likely scenario then both the candidates are given the same rank in the merit list.

How to check HSEE Results online?

Candidates can check the HSEE exam results online on the official website of the HSEE exam. One can follow the steps below to check their result.

  • Go to the HSEE exam website
  • Log in using the login details provided to you at the time of registration of online form submission.
  • Students have to enter their application number and password to log in.
  • Click on the result link
  • Download the merit list
  • You can now check your marks and rank
  • Print your result for future reference.

HSEE | Examination Cut-off marks

The cutoff marks are set by the authorities by taking into account a few factors. Only those students who have scored above the cut off marks are eligible for admission to 5 years integrated MA course in IIT Madras. The admission is done based on ranks that is prepared based on the marks scored by the candidates in the HSEE examination. Merit list has names of those candidates who have scored above minimum qualifying marks in the entrance test that is 50%.

The cut off marks of HSEE exam is determined based on the following factors:

  • Total number of students who have appeared in the examination
  • Total number of seats available for admission
  • Average marks or performance of the candidates in the exam
  • Cut off trends of the previous years
  • The difficulty level of the exam paper

Some relaxation is given to the students belonging to different categories. The minimum qualifying marks of different categories of candidates are as follows:

CategoryPercentage Marks
General50 %
NC-OBC45 %
SC25 %
ST25 %
PWD25 %

The merit list is prepared on the basis of the marks obtained by the candidates and a student who obtains higher marks is awarded a higher rank in the examination which in turn increases the probability of getting an offer of admission for the 5-year integrated MA program at IIT Madras.

HSEE | Registration of Examination

Candidates who wish to take admission in the 5 years integrated MA program at IIT Madras must submit the online application form successfully. To fill and submit the application form students have to visit the official website of the HSEE examination. Please note that you must always submit the application form through the official website of HSEE. Filling out the application form from the third-party websites may lead to fraud.

Follow the steps below to fill the online application form.

Step 1: Registration

Login to the HSEE website to fill the application form. On the official website after logging in, select the “Apply Online” tab from the menu and follow the instructions on the site. The applicant has to enter all the data as per the instructions. Once the candidate has entered the details such as name, email-ID, and phone number, the applicant will receive a confirmation mail, which consists of the HSEE 2020 registration number and password. Once the candidate has entered details such as name, email ID, and phone number, the applicant will receive a confirmation email consisting of the number and password of the HSEE 2020 registration.

Step 2: Personal details

After registering on the website one has to enter his personal details like:

  • Candidates’ name
  • Parents’ name
  • Educational qualification
  • Contact details – phone number, email id, and address
  • Gender
  • Nationality
  • Date of birth
  • Categories like General, OBC, SC, ST or PWD
  • Choice of examination center

Step 3: Documents

After filling out the personal details, the candidates will be asked to verify all the details once again. Verify all the details you have entered and click on proceed button. The next section of the application form is to scan and submit documents. Please note that all the documents must be scanned properly as the image must be clear and must be showing all the details. The documents that are required to be submitted with the application form are as follows: 

  • Signature of the candidate.
  • A recent photograph of the candidate
  • Scanned copy of the Class X Class Public Examination certificate as proof of name and date of birth.
  • A copy of the XII Class mark sheet (if already passed 10+2 examination).
  • A copy of the category certificate (ST/ SC/ NC-OBC).
  • A copy of the Dyslexia/ Scribe/ PWD certificate, if applicable.

All the documents must be submitted in the JPEG/JPG format.

Step 4: Fee payment

After successfully uploading all the required documents you will be directed to the fee payment page. A small amount of registration fee must be submitted by all the candidates without fail. Only those forms which have OK fee payment status is considered successfully submitted. Students can pay the fee online through debit card/ credit card/ master card/ Net banking and other online options.

After successfully fee payment you will receive a confirmation on your mail and registered mobile number about the form submission. You can also now download the filled application form for future reference. You must always keep all the communication mails containing your details as you may need it later.

 HSEE Examination | Who can Apply?

All the candidates must fulfill the minimum requirement criteria as decided by the authorities. Those who fail to meet the eligibility requirements are disqualified immediately. The common minimum eligibility criteria for HSEE exam is as follows:

 Candidates must have qualified the below-mentioned examinations as they are considered as the qualifying examination by the authorities to sit for the HSEE exam. The list of qualifying exams is: 

  • Final examination of the 10 + 2 program by a Central or State Board approved by the Indian Universities Association
  • A pre-university intermediate or two-year examination conducted by a board or university accredited by the Indian Universities Association.
  • The final exam of the National Defense Academy Joint Services Wing ‘s two-year course.
  • Senior high school exam conducted with a total of five subjects by the National Institute of Open Schooling.
  • Any high school, college, or university exam in India or a foreign country approved by the Association of Indian Universities as equivalent to the 10 + 2 system.
  • Vocational exam HSC.
  • General Education Certificate (GCE) exam (London, Cambridge, or Sri Lanka) at the Advanced (A) level.
  • Certificate of High School Examination from Cambridge University or International Baccalaureate Diploma from the International Baccalaureate Branch, Geneva.

Candidates should have secured at least 60% marks in the final qualifying examination to meet the eligibility criteria for the HSEE exam if they belong to general or OBC category. At the other hand, candidates from the SC, ST and PwD categories meet eligibility requirements for HSEE 2019 if they have secure minimum 55 percent marks in aggregate during the qualifying test.

HSEE  | Syllabus

The syllabus for the entire HSEE exam paper part wise is given below. Candidates must acquaint themselves with the syllabus set by IIT Madras to prepare well for the examination.

Part I Syllabus

English and Comprehension skills

  • Vocabulary
  • Basic grammar
  • Sentence formation
  • Syntax
  • Synonyms and antonyms
  • Reading skills

Quantitative aptitude: Percentages and its application, Ratio and its application, HCF, LCM, Factors, Numbers, Divisibility, Remainders, Sets, Basic Statistics, Calendars, Highest Common Factor, Lowest Common Factor, Calendar, Basic Statistics, Work and Time, Ratio and Proportion, Discount, Percentages, Numbers, Algebra, Simple and Compound Interest, Age Sums, Data Interpretation, Logical Reasoning, Brainteasers, Patterns, Linear Equations, Elementary Trigonometry

General Studies: Indian Economy, Indian Society and Culture, World Affairs, Environment, Ecology, and Current affairs

Part II Syllabus

Topics for the essay writing will be based on current affairs and general knowledge in Part II. The essay should construct a case, give a clear viewpoint, and, whenever possible, be substantiated with examples.

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