Why Govt & Not Private Universities Will be Hit by CBSE Exam Delay

Unlike private universities, most public varsities offer admissions on the basis of CBSE & other board exam scores.

3 min read

A possible delay in the conduct of Class 12 examinations to be conducted by the Central Board of Secondary Education this year may not impact private universities – reliant on their own entrance tests – but leave a lasting impact on most public varsities which often depend on marks obtained in boards alone.

In Delhi University, which has so far relied on admissions to undergraduate courses solely on the basis of board exam marks and a separate Delhi University Entrance Test for professional courses, uncertainty around boards has only led to stumbling blocks.


What’s bothering DU?

  • In December, the Union Education Ministry had set up a committee, whose job was to suggest ways in which a Central University Common Entrance Test can be conducted for admissions to all central universities.

  • This idea is enshrined in the National Education Policy 2020, which talks about a common entrance test for UG admissions.

Since DU is a central university, and has the freedom to decide the weightage given CUCET and board marks in arriving at a composite score, it had decided to explore a 50-50 division of marks.

While the university is awaiting a decision from the Education Ministry on the conduct of CUCET, uncertainty over how board exams would be conducted and when results would be announced has muddied the discussion of just how much weightage should be given to the two components, says Dean of Admissions Professor Pinki Sharma.

“Although we are confident about implementing CUCET this year, till CBSE announces how and when it will conduct exams, we are unable to take a call on how to divide marks between the entrance test and marks scored in board exams.”
Pinki Sharma, Dean of Admissions, DU.

In 2020, DU had begun registrations in June and later released its first cut-off on 10 October, but no dates have been announced for the admission season this year.

How will board exams delay Mumbai University admissions?

  • In Mumbai University, admissions cannot take place before board results are announced as the process of intake is entirely dependent on marks obtained by students in Class 12 board examinations.

  • However, the admission process in MU is contingent not just on CBSE, but also on Class 12 Senior Secondary Certificate (SSC) exams, which are conducted by the state’s board, says Dr Vinod Patil, Director, Board of Examinations and Evaluation.

While there is an entrance test conducted by the state for professional courses like B.Tech, for other courses, there’s no talk of a common entrance test, as envisioned in the National Education Policy.

“We generally start the admission process after results of Class 12 examinations conducted by the Maharashtra board have been declared. Without it, the admission process cannot start.”
Dr Vinod Patil, Director, Board of Examinations and Evaluation.

In 2020, the first cut-off list for Mumbai University was declared on 6 August.


Why will private universities not be hit by delay in board exams?

However, as mentioned above, several private universities are not completely dependent on board exam scores and mostly consider them as an eligibility criteria for seeking admission to courses offered by them.

Amity University: Although every student who applies to Amity University must secure a certain percentage of marks to be eligible for courses, the selection process is based entirely on a system where students are marked on the basis of video responses of three questions they are asked, says Maj Gen (retd) Bhaskar Chakravarty, Director of Admissions.

  • However, board exam results matter in the second option under which those who have scored above 80 percent are given admission test and are not required to go through the video selection process.

  • Maj Gen (retd) Chakravarty adds that admissions are currently underway on a rolling basis and a large number of students have already secured a seat in various courses. However, as and when board results are declared, student must meet the minimum eligibility criteria to confirm their admission.

  • In addition to meeting the eligibility criteria, students must also pass the board exam in order to retain their seat.

Ashoka University: Students applying to Ashoka University can receive a “firm offer” without having to wait for board exams, using the scores they receive in the mandatory Ashoka Aptitude Assessment, SAT or ACT, says Ali Imran, Vice-President, External Engagement, Ashoka University.

“Applicants who do not have their final Grade 12 Board marks submit their predicted marks along with SAT and/or ACT scores (if they have taken these tests). They then participate in a mandatory Assessment round including the Ashoka Aptitude Assessment and an on-the-spot essay, both of which are administered online. If shortlisted for the interview round, their performance in this round is the final input for the process."
Ali Imran, Vice-President, External Engagement, Ashoka University.

Following this elaborate process, students can receive a firm offer of admission without waiting for their Grade 12 Board examination results, says Ali.

The fourth round of applications for Ashoka's incoming Undergraduate class of 2021 is open till the 23 June.

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