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Good Samaritan

The School of Social Work was founded in 1955 by a religious society of Catholic women, known as Daughters of the Heart of Mary. In 1971, the women-only institute opened its doors to men and renamed itself the College of Social Work. Since 1978, the college is managed by the Nirmala Niketan Institute. The college offers a bachelors (BSW) and a masters course in social work (MSW). The degrees are awarded by the arts faculty of the University of Mumbai.

Application for admission must be made in the prescribed forms available at the office of the College of Social Work, Nirmala Niketan, 38 Sir Vithaldas Thackersey Marg, Mumbai-400020. Candidates who have appeared for their graduation exams from a university other than the University of Mumbai must produce a provisional eligibility certificate from Mumbai University before the admission procedure is completed. If they are unable to do so, they will not be considered for admission.

Eligibility

• Graduation in any stream with a 50 per cent aggregate for the MSW course. Candidates who have not passed their Plus Two exam from the Maharashtra State Board of Higher Secondary Education, Pune, will require a Permanent Eligibility Certificate for admission in the BSW course. Graduates with degrees from universities other than the University of Mumbai will also need to submit this certificate.

Although candidates with a first or second class are preferred, high academic achievement is not the only criterion for selection. Applicants are also evaluated for participation in extra-curricular activities, interest and previous experiences in social service, the capacity to understand a problem analytically and to help others. They are also graded on initiative and creative thinking. Their performance in all the above-mentioned areas will be taken into account for selection.

Entrance exam

• Interested candidates have to take a series of written tests in the third week of June. Those who qualify in the written tests are called for a group discussion and interview, which is held at the college premises in Mumbai. The list of final candidates is then put up on the notice board.

Pattern of exam

• The entrance exam has a section which tests the candidate’s aptitude for the subject, a multiple-choice section on general knowledge and an essay on social problems.

How to prepare

• The aptitude test assesses your general mental ability. By working through exercises and practice tests, you will learn to manage time effectively. You could prepare from books like Mental Ability and Quantitative Aptitude by Edgar Thorpe and Test of Reasoning by R.S. Agarwal. It is essential that you start preparing well in advance on all the topics.

You must also keep up with current affairs. Going through guides like the Manorama Year Book, Pearson’s GK guide, CSR Yearbook, G.K. Guide by Tata McGraw Hill will help. You must read newspapers and news magazines regularly, to keep track of national and international news.

As preparation for the essay, read editorials and pieces that focus on social issues. Practise writing essays on various topics such as school education should be free in India; the dilemma of child labour; social legislation cannot bring about social change unless there is social awareness and others.

sample test paper

Aptitude test

• A tourist drives 10 km towards the east, then turns to his right and drives 3 km. Then he drives towards the west (turning to his right) 3 km. He turns to his left and drives 2 km. Finally he turns to his right and travels 7 km. How far is he from his starting point and in which direction would he be '

a) 10 km, East
b) 9 km, North
c) 8 km, West
d) 5 km, West

General knowledge

• The Economic Survey 2006-07 reveals that the country’s economy is poised for a record ___ per cent growth this financial year despite galloping inflation.

a) 9
b) 9.2
c) 10
d) 10.5

Essay

• Write an essay on any one of the following topics.

1) Should capital punishment be abolished'
2) Is the Gandhian pattern of development relevant to modern Indian society'
3) What is the root problem of the country — population, corruption or any other'

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