Colleges, Universities fear Delayed Admissions, Curtailed Semester

Colleges, Universities fear Delayed Admissions, Curtailed Semester

CBSE postponing their Class-XII board exams for the pandemic has once again raised the specter of delayed admissions to undergraduate courses in colleges and universities in the city.

Colleges will not only have to postpone their admission schedules but also tweak the academic calendar and cut down on holidays so that they can cover the syllabus within the curtailed semester period. Though CBSE has already postponed its Class XII boards indefinitely, CISCE or the West Bengal Council for Higher Secondary Education is yet to make an announcement. ISC and HS are still supposed to be held from May 4 and June 15 respectively.

In the pre-pandemic years till 2019, colleges issued admission forms by the third week of May after Plus-II results were published. Many institutes, such as St Xavier’s College, started the process immediately after ISC and CBSE Class XII results were published before HS scores were announced. In 2020, the pandemic pushed the schedule back and UG admissions started in August. Some colleges and universities continued the process till January this year. While the first semester usually starts in August, the last session, started in the third week of December, as a result of which students got only three months to study six months’ syllabus.

At J D Birla Institute, the admission committee will meet next week to decide on the modalities and timeline of UG admissions. “Class-XII results, along with a personal interview of candidates, are the only criteria we follow to admit students here. If the exams are delayed, the results, too, will come late,” said principal Deepali Singh.

Pointing out how delayed admissions left them with very little time, the principal of a south Kolkata college said, “We got only three months to cover the syllabus after UGC instructed us to wrap up the semester by the third week of March. Science students did not have access to labs and libraries were shut for all. Teachers conducted online classes even on Saturdays and other government holidays to make up for a lost time. If admissions are delayed this year, the entire cycle will have to be repeated.

Most college principals TOI spoke to said whenever the admissions began, the process would entirely be online even this year, too, due to the pandemic. “We took the help of technology a lot. We have strengthened our online admission system and augmented the capacity,”

AsokMukhopadhyay Jaipuria College.

principal of Seth AnandaramPresidency University’s entrance examinations for admission to UG courses are slated for August 7 and 8. “We still have a few months. If required, we might review the schedule after dates for all school-leaving examinations are declared,” said an official.

On-campus classes for all colleges and universities have been suspended since March last year and online lessons have been the only mode over the past year. “The way Covid cases are surging again, we are not sure whether we will be able to return to physical classes any time soon,

Said another principal.

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