About IIT

The Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) are a group of autonomous public engineering and management institutes of India. The Institutes of Technology Act, 1961 lists sixteen institutes located at Bhubaneswar, Chennai, Delhi, Gandhinagar, Guwahati, Hyderabad, Indore, Jodhpur, Kanpur, Kharagpur, Mandi, Mumbai, Patna, Ropar, Roorkee and Varanasi. Each IIT is an autonomous institution, linked to the others through a common IIT Council, which oversees their administration. The IITs award degrees starting from B.Tech to Ph.D.

The IITs have a common admission process for undergraduate admissions. It was based on IIT-JEE, replaced by Joint Entrance Examination in 2013. The graduate level program that awards M. Tech. degree in engineering is administered by the older IITs (Kharagpur, Bombay, Madras, Kanpur, Delhi, Varanasi, Guwahati, Roorkee). M.Tech. admission decisions are made on the basis ofGraduate Aptitude Test in Engineering (GATE). In addition to B. Tech and M. Tech programs IITs also award other graduate degrees such as M.Sc. in Engineering, Maths, Physics and Chemistry, MBA, PhD and more. Admission to these programs are through Common Admission Test (CAT) Joint Admission Test to M.Sc. (JAM) and Common Entrance Examination for Design (CEED).IIT alumni have achieved success in a variety of professions. IITs are Institutes of National Importance established through special acts of Indian Parliament.

The IITs are located in:

Name Photo Sort Name Established City/Town State/UT Website
IIT Bhubaneswar IIT IITBBS 2008 Bhubaneshwar Odisha www.iitbbs.ac.in
IIT Bombay IIT IITB 1958 Mumbai Maharashtra www.iitb.ac.in
IIT Delhi IIT IITD 1963 New Delhi Delhi www.iitd.ac.in
IIT Gandhinagar IIT IITGN 2008 Gandhinagar Gujarat www.iitgn.ac.in
IIT Guwahati IIT IITG 1994 Guwahati Assam www.iitg.ac.in
IIT Hyderabad IIT IITH 2008 Hyderabad Andhra Pradesh www.iith.ac.in
IIT Indore IIT IITI 2009 Indore Madhya Pradesh www.iiti.ac.in
IIT Jodhpur IIT IITJ 2008 Jodhpur Rajasthan www.iitj.ac.in
IIT Kanpur IIT IITK 1959 Kanpur Uttar Pradesh www.iitk.ac.in
IIT Kharagpur IIT IITKGP 1951 Kharagpur West Bengal www.iitkgp.ac.in
IIT Madras IIT IITM 1959 Chennai Tamil Nadu www.iitm.ac.in
IIT Mandi IIT IIT Mandi 2009 Mandi Himachal Pradesh www.iitmandi.ac.in
IIT Patna IIT IITP 2008 Patna Bihar www.iitp.ac.in
IIT Roorkee IIT IITR 2001 Roorkee Uttarakhand www.iitr.ac.in
IIT Ropar IIT IITRPR 2008 Rupnagar Punjab www.iitrpr.ac.in
IIT (BHU) Varanasi IIT IIT(BHU) 2012 (founded in 1919) Varanasi Uttar Pradesh www.iitbhu.ac.in
ISM Dhanbad IIT ISMD 1926 Dhanbad Jharkhand www.ismd.ac.in


The history of the IIT system dates back to 1946 when Sir Jogendra Singh of the Viceroy's Executive Council set up a committee whose task was to consider the creation of Higher Technical Institutions for post-war industrial development in India. The 22-member committee, headed by Nalini Ranjan Sarkar, recommended the establishment of these institutions in various parts of India, with affiliated secondary institutions.

The first Indian Institute of Technology was founded in May 1950 at the site of the Hijli Detention Camp in Kharagpur. On the recommendations of the Sarkar Committee, four campuses were established at Mumbai (1958), Chennai (1959), Kanpur (1959), and Delhi(1961). Student agitations in the state of Assam made Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi promise the creation of a new IIT in Assam. This led to a sixth campus at Guwahati under the Assam Accord in 1994. The University of Roorkee, India's oldest engineering college, was conferred IIT status in 2001.

Over the past few years, there have been a number of developments toward establishing new IITs. On 1 October 2003, Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee announced plans to create more IITs "by upgrading existing academic institutions that have the necessary promise and potential".Subsequent developments led to the formation of the S K Joshi Committee in November 2003 to guide the selection of the five institutions which would become the five new IITs. Based on the initial recommendations of the Sarkar Committee, it was decided that further IITs should be spread throughout the country. When the government expressed its willingness to correct this regional imbalance, 16 states demanded IITs. Since the S K Joshi Committee prescribed strict guidelines for institutions aspiring to be IITs only seven colleges were selected for final consideration. Plans are also reported to open IITs outside India, though not enough progress has been made in this regard. Eventually in the 11th Five year plan, eight states were identified for establishment of new IITs, and IT-BHU was converted into an IIT.


The various IITs function autonomously, and their special status as Institutes of National Importance facilitates the smooth running of IITs, virtually free from both regional as well as student politics. Such autonomy means that IITs can create their own curricula and adapt rapidly to the changes in educational requirements, free from bureaucratic hurdles. The government has no direct control over internal policy decisions of IITs (like faculty recruitment and curricula) but has representation on the IIT Council. The medium of instruction in all IITs is English. The academic policies of each IIT are decided by its Senate. This comprises all professors of the IIT and student representatives. Unlike many western universities that have an elected senate, the IITs have an academic senate. It controls and approves the curriculum, courses, examinations and results, and appoints committees to look into specific academic matters. The teaching, training and research activities of the institute are periodically reviewed by the senate to maintain educational standards. The Director of an IIT is the ex-officio Chairman of the Senate.

All the IITs follow the credits system of performance evaluation, with proportional weighting of courses based on their importance. The total marks (usually out of 100) form the basis of grades, with a grade value (out of 10) assigned to a range of marks. Sometimes, relative grading is done considering the overall performance of the whole class. For each semester, the students are graded on a scale of 0 to 10 based on their performance, by taking a weighted average of the grade points from all the courses, with their respective credit points. Each semester evaluation is done independently and then the weighted average over all semesters is used to calculate the cumulative grade point average (known as CGPA or CPI—Cumulative Performance Index).

Undergraduate Education

The Bachelor of Technology (B.Tech) degree is the most common undergraduate degree in the IITs in terms of student enrollment, although dual degrees integrating Master of Science or Master of Arts are also offered. The B.Tech course is based on a 4-year program with eight semesters, while the Dual Degree and Integrated courses are 5-year programs with ten semesters. In all IITs, the first year of B.Tech. and Dual Degree courses are marked by a common course structure for all the students, though in some IITs, a single department introduction related course is also included. The common courses include the basics from most of the departments like Electronics, Mechanics, Chemistry, Electrical and Physics. At the end of first year, an option to change departments is given to meritorious students on the basis of their performance in the first two semesters. Few such changes ultimately take place as the criteria for them are usually strict, limited to the most meritorious students.

From the second year onwards, the students study subjects exclusively from their respective departments. In addition to these, the students have to take compulsory advanced courses from other departments in order to broaden their education. Separate compulsory courses from humanities andsocial sciences department, and sometimes management courses are also enforced. In the last year of their studies, most of the students are placed into industries and organisations via the placement process of the respective IIT, though some students opt out of this either when going for higher studies or when they take up jobs by applying to the companies directly.

Bachelors-Masters dual degrees:

The IITs also offer an unconventional B.Tech. and M.Tech. integrated educational program called "Dual Degree". It integrates undergraduate and postgraduate studies in selected areas of specialisation. It is completed in five years as against six years in conventional B.Tech. (four years) followed by an M.Tech. (two years). Integrated Master of Science programs are also offered at few IITs which integrates the Undergraduate and Postgraduate studies in Science streams in a single degree program against the conventional University system. These programs were started to allow IITians to complete postgraduate studies from IIT rather than having to go to another institute.

Culture and student life

All the IITs provide on-campus residential facilities to the students, research scholars and faculty. The students live in hostels (sometimes referred to as halls) throughout their stay in the IIT. Students in all IITs must choose between National Cadet Corps (NCC), National Service Scheme (NSS) and National Sports Organisation (NSO) in their first years. All the IITs have sports grounds for basketball, cricket, football (soccer), hockey, volleyball, lawn tennis, badminton, and athletics; and swimming pools for aquatic events.

Usually the hostels also have their own sports grounds.

Technical and cultural festivals

All IITs organise annual technical festivals, typically lasting three or four days. The technical festivals are Shaastra (IIT Madras), Kshitij (IIT Kharagpur), Techfest (IIT Bombay), Cognizance (IIT Roorkee), Nvision (IIT Hyderabad), Amalthea (IIT Gandhinagar), Technex (IIT BHU), Techkriti (IIT Kanpur), Tryst (IIT Delhi), Techniche (IIT Guwahati), Wissenaire (IIT Bhubaneswar), Exodia (IIT Mandi), and Fluxus (IIT Indore), Celesta (IIT Patna)and IGNUS (IIT Jodhpur).

Annual cultural festivals are also organised by the IITs and last three to four days. These include Saarang (IIT Madras, previously Mardi Gras), Spring Fest (IIT Kharagpur, also known as SF),Rendezvous (IIT Delhi), Tarang (previously Rave) and Thomso (IIT Roorkee), Kashiyatra (IIT BHU, also known as KY), SPANDAN (IIT Rajasthan), Blithchron (IIT Gandhinagar), ELAN (IIT Hyderabad), Alma Fiesta (IIT Bhubaneswar), Mood Indigo (IIT Bombay, also known as Mood-I), Antaragni (IIT Kanpur), Alcheringa (IIT Guwahati), Zeitgeist (IIT Ropar) and Anwesha (IIT Patna).


IITs have a special status as Institutes of National Importance under the Indian Institute of Technology Act, due to which the degrees provided by IITs need not be recognised by the AICTE. The IIT-JEE and GATE are important factor behind the success of IITs, as it enables the IITs to accept only a select group of meritorious students. This combination of success factors has led to the concept of the IIT Brand. Other factors that have contributed to the success of IITs are stringent faculty recruitment procedures and industry collaboration. The procedure for selection of faculty in IITs is stricter as compared to other colleges offering similar degrees. The PhD degree is a pre-requisite for all regular faculty appointments.

Former IIT students get greater respect from their peers, academia and industry in general. The IIT brand was reaffirmed when the United States House of Representatives passed a resolution honoring Indian Americans and especially graduates of IIT for their contributions to the American society. Similarly, China also recognized the value of IITs and planned to replicate the model.

Educational rankings

Nationwide, most IITs are ranked above any other engineering colleges in India in engineering education rankings. Outlook India's Top Engineering Colleges of 2012 ranked seven IITs in its top 10, including the top five positions. India Today's Best Engineering colleges of 2012 also ranked seven IITs in its top 10, including the top four. Dataquest's India's Top Engineering Colleges 2011 (DQ-CMR Top T-Schools Survey 2011) ranked IITs in six of the top 10, including the top four.

Worldwide, the only three institutes in India ranked in the top 300 of the QS World University Rankings of 2012 are IITs, IIT Delhi at 212, IIT Bombay at 227 and IIT Kanpur at 278. The Times Asia Rankings featured IIT Kharagpur, IIT Bombay and IIT Roorkee at 30th, 34th and 56th respectively.


As of 2008, the alumni of IIT number more than 170,000. The IITians are known for their loyalty to their alma mater and many IIT Alumni Associations are active in India and abroad. The IIT alumni either help their alma mater in the form of donations, or by preferential job opportunities extended to students from the IITs. Many IIT's alumni have become entrepreneurs, including N. R. Narayana Murthy (co-founder and former chairman of Infosys), Rajendra S. Pawar (Co-founder and Chairman of NIIT), Vinod Khosla(co-founder, Sun Microsystems), Rajat Gupta (former Managing Director, McKinsey), Nikesh Arora[71](Senior Vice President and Chief Business Officer at Google), Arun Sarin (former CEO, Vodafone), Victor Menezes (Senior Vice Chairman, Citigroup), and Kanwal Rekhi (CTO, Novell). IIT alumni have also pursued careers in politics; for example, Krishan Kant[72] former Vice-President of India, Manohar Parrikar became theChief Minister of Goa;and Arvind Kejriwal who resigned from his position in the Indian Revenue Service and has since been campaigning against corruption in India with Anna Hazare. Many alumni have gained significant recognition: Duvvuri Subbarao was the Former Governor of Reserve Bank of India, Raghuram Rajan is the Current Governor of Reserve Bank of India, Sushantha Kumar Bhattacharyya was awarded the CBE, a knighthood, and Padma Bhushan, Kota Harinarayana[73] was a Padma Shri awardee and distinguished scientist at DRDO; and V. C. Kulandaiswamy was awarded Padma Shri and Padma Bhushan. Arogyaswami Paulraj well known for his work in wireless technology was awarded Padma Bhushan. Narendra Karmarkar is also for his work in applied mathematics. Many IITians have contributed to innovations in science and technology, such as Pulickel Ajayan a pioneering scientist in the field of carbon nanotubes.