What does the postponement of the CBSE board exams mean for college admissions?

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This article first appeared in the Hindu on January 16, 2021.

Students of Class XII across the country met the announcement of the CBSE board exams being postponed to May with some confusion. Reactions ranged from “What does this mean for us?” and “We have to study for another half a year!” to “What about summer break?” and “How will this impact college admissions?” Let’s take a look at the last aspect.

In India

Mostly, students have more prep time for entrance tests, as many Indian colleges still have to start admissions though some early rounds are done. The May and June rounds will likely be postponed to July. The good news is that this gives students time to prepare for entrance tests during the April rounds. Colleges like NMIMS, Azim Premji, Symbiosis and others who usually run their admission processes in May and June will have to postpone. Admissions to Delhi University, Mumbai University and other colleges that work on board results will also, most likely, be postponed. Here are some ready reckoner dates for admission rounds:

Ashoka University: April 7 and May 23

Flame University: March 15 and April 19

Christ University: April 18, April 22, May 8 and May 21 

Krea University: April 6 and May 31 

Jindal Global University: March 31 and May 5 

In the U.K. and Europe 

Final decisions will be delayed and clearing rounds have to be skipped. Applications to the U.K. through the UCAS have gone and most European colleges have rolling deadlines, so this does not impact applications. Colleges in the U.K. and Ireland give conditional admissions that depend on the final board result. Postponement of the board result means that students have to wait till late July or early August to get a final decision on their admissions. This will have a domino effect of delaying confirmation of admission into the back-up colleges. 

The U.K. also offers fresh admission opportunities to students who have not applied or not been admitted to any colleges through the “Clearing Round”. If they go ahead with the Clearing Round in June, they may not be keen to admit students without the final board results, unless they make an exception and offer conditional admissions here too. 

In Australia

Australian universities give a combination of conditional and unconditional offers so this will make it challenging for students with conditional offers. However, the worst impact is a delay in decisions. Students will do well to plan and accept back up offers in Indian universities to manage this risk. 

In the U.S.

The impact here is minimal. Admission offers are unconditional and most come in by March and April. The good news is that actual board results have little impact on university offers so students can sing all the way to their boards. 

The bad news is that your holidays are curtailed, you have to study longer and that you will be on tenterhooks with respect to conditional offers from the U.K., Europe and Australia. The good news is that you have more time to prepare, not just for the board exams but also for entrance tests to Indian colleges!

One thought on “What does the postponement of the CBSE board exams mean for college admissions?”

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