June 8, 2021 6:01:01 pm
The uncertainty over Class 12 Board Examinations ended last week when the Central government announced the cancellation of CBSE board exams for this year. Soon after, CISCE and state boards followed suit. Boards are now devising an alternative scheme for grading students. The decision has come as a sigh of relief for lakhs of students across the country, especially those who wanted to study abroad.
“The uncertainty was getting too close for comfort. Students would have already got admission offers months ago (based on their marks in class 9-11) and just needed their class 12 results to finalise the admission. If the exams or results had been delayed beyond July, students would not have got their CBSE certificates and American universities would have lost out on a huge tranche of undergraduate students,” said Glen Besterfield, dean of admissions, University of South Florida (USF).
As per the Ministry of External Affairs data, as of the end of January 2021, there were more than 10.9 lakh Indian students in as many as 85 countries. Of these, nearly two lakh students were in Canada and around 1.9 lakh in the US, followed by the UAE (nearly 2.1 lakh).
To start a bachelor’s degree at an institution of higher education in America, students need to confirm the institute that an equivalent of a US high school diploma has been awarded before the start of the semester.
Akshay Chaturvedi, founder and CEO of study abroad platform Leverage Edu, said that it is reasonable and logical for schools to release provisionals or predicted marksheets to help students continue with their applications causing no delays. While universities are open to accepting provisional marksheets for the time being, class 12 percentage is an important criterion and we do not see universities assessing applicants completely devoid of it.
“Universities are accepting provisional marksheets and predictive scores with almost all courses being offered during the January 2022 intake. This would enable students unable to join the September 2021 intake because of delays (if any) to join their cohort in 2022 intake. However, universities haven’t made any further communication on assessment methods yet, but all eyes are on the alternative assessment methods to be adopted by Indian boards,” he added.
A spokesperson from the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, also agreed that admissions will be confirmed based on their marks in class 12. “We understand that the CBSE and CISCE Standard 12 examinations have been cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic. We will use the class 12 results generated by respective examination boards to confirm applicants’ offers. To allow more time for the students to prepare for their application, we are still accepting applications where places are available,” the spokesperson said.
For 2021, USF has already received 4,298 applications from Indian students (for both UG and PG courses) and have so far admitted 1,355. In 2020 for the fall and summer semesters, the varsity received 2,932 applications (for undergraduate and graduate) and admitted 1,128.
Foreign admissions are unlikely to be affected as all international universities have adjusted their admissions policies due to the unforeseen circumstances arising as an outcome of a global pandemic, says Kavita Shukla, vice president, student recruitment, Amity University Dubai.
“Since our academic year commences by mid of September each year; we are continuing to issue conditional offer letters based on predicted grades submitted by the students. There is some delay in the final confirmation of seats by students and parents after the cancellation of class 12 board exams as schools are now holding internal final exams in the coming months (June and July). The results are expected to be announced by the end of July or the first week of August,” Shukla added.
Indian students form a majority of the varsity’s student population and out of more than 1,000 Indian applicants, last year almost 70 per cent had joined their respective courses. This year, the applications are still open, hence the final data on admissions is yet to be processed.
Besterfield said that if exams had been held and the results were delayed beyond July, students would not have been able to enrol for fall 2021 and would have missed their scholarship, which can account for up to 70 per cent of the tuition fee.
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