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UGC decides to hold central admission test for public universities

The UGC will issue a notice on the admission test outline and test procedure soon

Central Admission tests for public universities will be held from the 2020-2021 academic year.  

The decision was taken at a meeting held at the University Grants Commission (UGC) office on Wednesday, with the vice chancellors of 12 universities in attendance. 

The UGC will start working from the first week of March on finalizing the process of the admission tests.  

Four universities --- Dhaka University, Chittagong University, Jahangirnagar University and BUET --- however are yet to decide on their inclusion in the process. They will announce their decisions after discussing the matter with their academic committees.

UGC Chairman Prof Kazi Shahidullah told reporters that some universities, including Dhaka University (DU), did not disagree but they said they would take the decision soon.

Later DU VC Dr Md Akhtaruzzaman said the university authorities would discuss the issue at their academic council meeting before taking a decision.    

At the meeting, the UGC chairman said: “We expect full-fledged activities to begin with the central admission test from the first week of March. The UGC will extend its full support to the universities in taking this admission process forward.”

He also said that various committees would be formed with university teachers for the central admission test. 

The UGC will issue a notice on the admission test outline and test procedure soon, he added. 

After the meeting, UGC member Prof Dil Afroza Begum told Dhaka Tribune that a circular would be published in November in this regard. 

It may be recalled that last Tuesday the vice chancellors of 28 universities in a meeting had agreed on the combined test and to finishing taking the exams by this November.

The UGC took the decision on January 23, terming the examination as a central admission test for public universities.  

The UGC moved for uniform admission tests after Chancellor and President Abdul Hamid on several occasions asked public universities to hold central admission tests to ease the sufferings of students and their guardians.

According to the plan, students of humanities, science, and business studies would be eligible to take the tests in line with the HSC syllabus.

The education ministry in 2010 had decided to introduce a central admission test, dubbed the "cluster system". But it did not see light due to opposition from several major universities.

Procedure of central test

According to the primary draft documents, the central admission test will be conducted from the 2020-2021 academic year.

Despite differences in the aims, objectives and academic processes of the universities, admission tests can be taken on the basis of the subjects studied in the HSC examination.  In view of the matter, after the HSC results are published, the public universities will arrange admission tests at their respective campuses as per the rules and timeframe provided by the Central Admission Committee. 

Three separate admission tests will be conducted by experienced academics in three subjects on three different days. The subjects are humanities, science, and business studies. 

After providing the results of the admission test, the work of the Central Admission Committee will be completed, mentioned the UGC draft file.

The draft also mentioned that there has to be an examination center for every public university. Students will participate in admission tests at the centers of their choice. 

In case a university gets a huge number of applications and is unable to arrange the admission test at its campus, it would have to arrange the admission test at the nearest university, it further noted. 

The UGC chairman said: “We are hoping that this will reduce the hassle for admission seekers. However, we have also considered the physical, mental and financial costs undergone by students during the admission process.

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