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IITs Vs NITs: What to Choose and How to Choose?

Last updated on September 16th, 2020 at 03:24 pm

It is very difficult for students to choose a college of their choice after clearing the board exams because of the high level of competition among IITs vs NITs. Just a few years ago, the competition was very low compared to the present. Around a decade ago, the number of top engineering institutions of India was limited and the level of education was low. But now, with the improvement in education and infrastructure, the number of IITs has increased, with a sharp increase in the number of students aiming for top-tier IITs. This has raised the bar for competition among IITs vs NITs.

  • Almost, each and every IIT is considered top-notch just because of the name ‘IIT’ associated with it.
  • This is the reason why a lot of students do not even consider NITs.
  • Moreover, old NITs have lost their glory with the newly established IITs.
  • But, if considered thoroughly, NITs are now the hub of talent for industries.
  • Let us compare in detail the difference between IIT and NIT, what should a student choose after JEE Main and how the procedure of admission through JEE Main follows.

IITs vs NITs: A Brief History

Before diving deep into the comparison of both IITs vs NITs, let us take a look at the stories behind setting up of IITs vs NITs.

IITs: After the independence of India, Sir Ardeshir Dalal from the Viceroy’s Executive Council proposed to build a Council of Scientific and Industrial Research for technical development of the labour.

  1. Dr Humayun Kabir encouraged Dr B C Roy, the chief minister of West Bengal to think about the project.
  2. Then they built a committee under Sir Nalini Ranjan Sarkar and took initiative to build Indian Institute of Technology at Kharagpur.
  3. After this, four more campuses were set up in Bombay (Mumbai), Madras (Chennai), Kanpur and Delhi.
  4. The country now has 23 IITs and all the IITs are governed under the Institutes of Technology Act, 1961.

NITs: During the second five-year plan (1956–60) in India, the Government of India needed trained workers in newly set up industries.

  1. So they started the Regional Engineering Colleges (RECs) all over India, with one college in each state.
  2. This is one reason why many new NITs are associated with the name of the state rather than the city or town.
  3. Due to the enormous costs of IITs, the government took the decision to turn RECs into National Institutes of Technology (NITs).
  4. NITs are now declared as institutions of national importance under the National Institutes of Technology Act, 2007.

Also Read | What Options Do You Have After JEE Main?

Number of IITs vs NITs

  • There are a total of 23 IITs vs 31 NITs.
  • Therefore, the number of seats in NITs is much more than the number of seats in IITs.
  • The level of education in NITs is close to that of the IITs.
  • However, the only difference between IIT and NIT is the kind of batch both colleges acquire.
  • Here is the complete list of various IITs vs NITs.
S. No. Indian Institutes of Technology National Institutes of Technology
1. IIT Kharagpur National Institute of Technology, Agartala
2. IIT Mumbai Motilal Nehru NIT Allahabad
3. IIT Kanpur Maulana Azad NIT Bhopal
4. IIT Madras NIT Calicut
5. IIT Delhi NIT Durgapur
6. IIT Guwahati NIT Hamirpur
7. IIT Roorkee Malaviya NIT Jaipur
8. IIT Bhubaneswar Dr. B. R. Ambedkar NIT Jalandhar
9. IIT Gandhinagar NIT Jamshedpur
10. IIT Hyderabad NIT Kurukshetra
11. IIT Jodhpur Visvesvaraya NIT Nagpur
12. IIT Patna NIT Patna
13. IIT Ropar NIT Raipur
14. IIT Indore NIT Rourkela
15. IIT Mandi NIT Silchar
16. IIT (BHU) Varanasi NIT Srinagar
17. IIT Palakkad SVNIT Surat
18. IIT Tirupati NIT Karnataka, Surathkal
19. IIT Dhanbad NIT Tadepalligudem
20. IIT Bhilai NIT Trichy
21. IIT Goa NIT Warangal
22. IIT Jammu NIT Arunachal Pradesh
23. IIT Dharwad NIT Sikkim
24. NIT Goa
25. NIT Meghalaya
26. NIT Nagaland
27. NIT Manipur
28. NIT Mizoram
29. NIT Uttarakhand
30. NIT Delhi
31. NIT Pondicherry

From the list, it is clear that students from various states can choose NITs over IITs due to better availability of NITs in each and every state of India.

Admission Process in IITs vs NITs

  1. After the Government of India decided to let go of a separate counselling process, the admission to NITs and IITs was possible only through JoSAA Counselling.
  2. JoSAA stands for Joint Seat Allocation Authority. It is responsible for conducting the counselling for all the government colleges through JEE Main and JEE Advanced scores of students.
  3. So there’s not much difference in the process, but given below is the admission criteria and process of IITs vs NITs.
  • Admission to NITs – 
    1. The candidates who qualify JEE Main can get admission in their desired NITs.
    2. However, they have to clear the cut off for NITs. JEE Main is conducted by NTA.
    3. Previously, this exam was conducted by CBSE. But MHRD decided to hand over the responsibility of JEE Main to NTA.
    4. Once qualified in JEE Main, the top 2.5 lac students can appear for JEE Advanced.
    5. NITs have almost 20,000 seats in various B.Tech courses.
  • Admission to IITs
    1. To get admission in IITs students have to qualify the JEE Main exam and then JEE Advanced exam.
    2. They need to hold at least 75% marks in the board exam or be in the top 20 percentile of their respective board.
    3. Along with this, students must also clear the JEE Advanced Cut Off.
    4. This is also applicable for Bachelor of Architecture and B.Planning admissions.
    5. The IITs have around 11,000 seats for B.Tech specializations.

Also Read | JEE Main B.Arch Preparation Tips

Course Curriculum for Students

  • IITs and NITs are not the same when compared to the level of studies.
  • IITs possess a high-grade infrastructure of courses, scope, faculties as well as top-scoring students versus NITs.
  • On the other hand, NITs do have batches with diligent and smart students, in comparison to the level of top private colleges.
  • But NITs are always a second choice for students.
  • This is because IITs provide a wide range of courses with highly skilled faculty who prefer innovative teaching techniques.
  • Here is the list of courses offered by IITs vs NITs-
Degree Type IIT Courses NIT Courses
Undergraduate B-Tech B-Tech
Dual Degree M.Sc. Dual Degree Integrated Courses
Dual Degree MA BA
B-Arch B-Arch
B-Planning B-Planning
Post Graduate M-Tech M-Tech
M.Sc. M.Sc.
M-Arch M-Arch
Master of Design MCA
Post Graduate Diploma in Information and Technology (PGDIT)
Master in Medical Science & Technology (MMST)
Post Graduate Diploma (PGDIPL)
Postgraduate Diploma in Maritime Operation & Management (PGDMOM)
Doctorate PhD PhD
  • The courses mentioned above have different curriculums according to the various branches that students opt for after taking admission to a college.
  • The exact curriculum can be viewed by visiting the official website of either of the colleges and looking up ‘Undergraduate Programmes’ offered by that college.
  • To get the best courses, students must clear the required cut off for that particular course.
  • To do that, you might even need to score at least above 250 in JEE Main.
  • The number of courses offered is not limited to the ones mentioned above.
  • There are other similar courses in the technical field offered by both IITs and NITs.
  • Moreover, the most important part is the various specializations offered at both colleges with the faculty to provide adequate support.
  • This is what major private colleges lack in.

Also Read | These Alternatives Can Help Even A Low Ranker In JEE Main!

Infrastructure & Facilities

  1. The technical support in IITs, webmail system, the management of studies, the online portal is what makes students passionate for IITs vs NITs.
  2. Arguably, NITs currently do not have a top-notch infrastructure. NITs might need some time to develop this kind of infrastructure.
  3. Area wise too, IITs vs NITs have larger campuses.
  4. The largest NIT Campus is of NIT Trichy i.e. 800 acres.
  5. While the largest IIT Campus is of IIT Kharagpur i.e. 2100 acres, almost 3 other IITs have a larger campus size than that of NIT Trichy.
  6. The prototype labs, automatic machines, Computer-aided-design data have made IITs very attractive than NITs.
  7. Although, the research facility of IITs vs NITs is equally equipped with high-end latest technology.
  8. To compare the faculties of IITs vs NITs, NITs have very prominent faculties with great industry and teaching experience.
  9. The faculty is skilled and many are top educated professors graduated from IITs itself.
  10. However, NITs contribute a large amount of research and development towards the country’s overall growth.
  11. The top-tier, pre-established NITs are equivalent to the top-tier IITs.

Also Read | Participating Colleges of JoSAA and Their Cut Offs

Extra-Curricular Activities, Sports & Culture Fests at IITs vs NITs

  • The competition in co-curriculum activities is almost the same for IITs vs NITs.
  • Every year there are several competitions in sports and other activities which increases the decision-making skills of the students.
  • Colleges have their own bands, dance groups, sports teams, drama teams which are made by actively enthusiastic students every year.
  • The extra-curricular activity which is performed by IITs are-
    • Drama
    • Dance
    • Literature Club
    • Music
    • Quizzing
    • Hindi Samiti
    • Student Welfare
  • The students of both institutes are influenced to boost sports activity which helps them to increase their skill and personality and also provide chances of national-level competition.
  • The cultural fest is the part of education for both of the institutes. Intercollege and international level competitions are held.
  • Name of some cultural festival is given below for IITs vs NITs-
S.No. Cultural Fests at IITs Cultural Fests at NITs
1. Shaastra Advaitam
2. Kshitij Saptrang
3. Techfest Utkansh
4. Cognizance Utkarsh
5 Nvision Confluence
6. Technex Aarohi

Also Read | How To Prepare for JEE Main 2020?

Placements & Salary Offered at IITs vs NITs

  • The role of the institute is big when it comes to the placement and salary package because initially, the institutes give the opportunity which gives you the educational reputation.
  • It depends on the student’s skill, not the type of institution.
  • When it comes to the opportunity it is obvious that higher packages are offered at IITs vs NITs.
  • Starting salary of IITs are 8,00,000 or above and students get chances to even go abroad at crores of annual CTC.
  • Although, there are many students holding high paying jobs from NITs vs IITs students.

The 2015-2019 batch of IITs holds the highest salary and a great average placement package. Here is the data for some top IITs with the highest CTC offered, average CTC and top companies that hired students.


IITs IIT Bombay IIT Madras IIT Kharagpur IIT Kanpur
Highest CTC INR 1.5 Crore Per Annum INR 95.87 LPA INR 1 Crore Per Annum INR 1.42 Crore Per Annum
Average CTC INR 18 LPA INR 20 LPA INR 13.3 LPA INR 15.8 LPA
Top Companies Microsoft Dell Intel
Goldman Sachs Intel Quantiphi
Qualcomm Microsoft PWC
Tata Steel Samsung Research Institute Tata Steel
Uber Tivo Goldman Sachs
Morgan Stanley Barclays SAP Labs
Rubrik Oyo Qualcomm
Axis Bank


IITs IIT Delhi IIT Indore IIT Guwahati IIT Roorkee
Highest CTC INR 1.4 Crore Per Annum 6 million Yen ~ INR 42 lac (International),

INR 36.5 lakh (Domestic)

INR 1.5 crore (International),

INR 44 lakh (Domestic)

INR 1.5 crore (International),

INR 47 lakh (Domestic)

Average CTC INR 16 LPA INR 16.6 LPA INR 15.57 LPA INR 20 LPA
Top Companies Microsoft Bharat Seats Cognizant Microsoft
EXL Intel Tata Motors Uber
Bangalore L & T L & T ONGC
Samsung Research DE Shaw Reliance ITC
Goldman Sachs MAQ Software American Express ISRO
Intel Cognizant Adobe Schlumberger
Amazon Amazon Goldman Sachs
L & T Infotech Samsung Tower Research


IITs IIT Hyderabad IIT Patna IIT Ropar IIT (BHU) Varanasi
Highest CTC INR 40 LPA INR 49.80 LPA INR 17.45 LPA INR 1.38 Crore Per Annum
Average CTC INR 11.5 LPA INR 11.47 LPA INR 11.7 LPA INR 8.19 LPA
Top Companies Qualcomm Samsung Tata Motors Intel
Goldman Sachs Capgemini Amazon Mindtickle
Oracle L & T ECC Reliance Jio Tower Research
DE Shaw DESIS Goldman Sachs Uber
Yahoo Japan Microsoft Samsung Oracle
Maruti Suzuki Mahindra & Mahindra ISRO Microsoft
Schlumberger ISRO Saavn Goldman Sachs
Vedanta Infosys Mahindra & Mahindra
L & T Adobe
Renault Nissan Amazon India

*The data above is from the official sources of 2019.

Also Read | Can You Make A Career Without JEE Main?

Notable Alumni of IITs vs NITs

There are some well-renowned names from IITs and NITs. While the alumni from NIT are not that famous, they still lead a large number of Indian Corporations.

S. No. Name Designation & Company Alumnus
1 Sachin Bansal Co-Founder of Flipkart IIT
2 Raghuram Rajan Former RBI Governor IIT
3 N. R. Narayan Murthy Co-Founder of Infosys IIT
4 Nitish Kumar Chief Minister of Bihar NIT
5 Natarajan Chandrasekaran Chairman of Tata Sons NIT
6 Shyam Srinivasan CEO of Federal Bank NIT
7 Hemesh Singh Co-Founder of Unacademy NIT
8 Sanjiv Chaturvedi Ramon Magsaysay Awardee NIT
9 Sundar Pichai CEO of Alphabet & Google IIT
10 Nitesh Arora Chairman of SoftBank Crop IIT
  • We have now discussed almost all major aspects which vary in IITs and NITs.
  • After considering these various aspects, you can move further on your decision to choose NITs or IITs depending on the preference.
  • Both colleges have the requisite facilities that students need to excel in their particular field.
  • NITs take the scores of JEE Main while IITs take the scores of JEE Advanced.
  • Due to heavy competition in JEE Advanced, the batches of IITs are filled with highly intelligent students who have already defeated more than 10 lakh students!
  • So, do not stop here! You have a long journey ahead.
  • Make sure to gear up for the preparations of JEE Main with everything you have!
  • How about you start with the top android apps to prepare for JEE Main?

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