Delay in school-leaving examinations to be conducted by the Central Board of Secondary (CBSE) education this year could have a spiralling impact on admissions in colleges affiliated to public universities, but may not severely throw off the admission schedule in major private varsities, which often rely on their own selection process.
Usually conducted between the months of February and March, CBSE board exams in 2021 have been postponed to May, owing to the coronavirus pandemic.
The decison was announced on 31 December 2020,by Union Education Minister Dr Ramesh Pokhriyal, who said that CBSE Board Exams 2021would be conducted from 4 May to 10 June, results for which will be declared by 15 July.
In particular, delayed board exams are likely to delay admissions to public varsities like the University of Delhi, where the cut-offs for a large number of courses are entirely decided on marks scored in board exams.
According to a DU official, the registration process can start before the declaration of board exam results, during which a students can fill up basic details online.
“If the student completes the registration process and merely enters marks scored in board exams after results are out, then it should take about 15 to 20 days for the first cut-off list to come out.”DU Official
The official, however, warned that so far, dates for admissions have not been decided, as DU is expecting the Union Ministry of Education to take a call on common entrance test, as envisioned in the National Education Policy.
Like DU, the University of Mumbai (MU) too is waiting for board exam results. 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 Maharashtra School Education Minister Varsha Gaikwad has said that SSC exams could begin from after 1 May, there’s no clarity on when results for the same would be declared.
“Usually, SSC board results come out in the end of May and the admission process begins in June. This year we can only talk about dates after dates for board results are declared.”Dr Vinod Patil, Director, Board of Examinations and Evaluation.
In 2020, admissions were delayed to August and admissions to some of the courses are still underway.
No Major Impact on Private Universities
Shiv Nadar University: A spokesperson for SNU said that while all students seeking admissions to UG courses must secure at least a given percentage in board examinations as an eligibility, marks they score in these school-leaving examinations do not carry weightage in merit lists published by the college.
A delay in board exams will not have significant impact on admissions, as students are admitted on the basis of entrance tests.
Instead of relying on board marks, SNU, the spokesperson added, conducts its own entrance test called SNU-SAT, while also accepting scores for JEE Main, SAT and ACT for admissions. In some courses, these tests are followed by interaction.
If a student makes it through any of these admission routes and if board exam results are not declared till then, she may be given admission on a provisional basis. However, the admission will only be confirmed if the student meets the eligibility criteria of securing a certain percentage in board exams.
Amity University: At Amity, too, every programme has a varying eligibility criteria, which is based on marks scored in board examination, said Gen. Bhaskar Chakravarty, Director, Admissions.
“For engineering, one has to have 60 percent in PCM, in Economics Hons, one has to have 60 percent aggregate in addition to 70 percent in Economics.”Gen. Bhaskar Chakravarty, Director, Admissions.
However, even before the declaration of board exam results, students can take provisional admission to the university. While in some cases students are asked to send videos of three questions on random, in others, interviews are conducted.
They are then marked by the university on the basis of their performance in these videos or interviews and it is these marks on the basis of which the merit list is prepared. These students, however, must meet the eligibility criteria once their board results are declared.
However, Gen. Chakravarty clarified that students who score above 80 percent in board exams are admitted directly on the basis of board exam results, while those scoring above 90 percent are offered scholarships.
Amity, which usually completes the admission process by July, expects a delay of one month in 2021.