Published weekly, the COVID-19 Impact on South Asian students highlights news drawn from various sources focusing on South Asian students who are studying abroad and the ones who aspire to study abroad during the times of the COVID-19 pandemic.

This edition of the COVID-19 Impact on South Asian students covers news articles from November 02 – November 09, 2020.

Stay Safe.


Indian students continue to fly abroad despite COVID; smaller, less-impacted countries get a boost

04th November 2020 | The Indian Express

COVID-19 pandemic hasn’t deterred Indian students to pursue their study-abroad dreams, however, the focus has moved towards smaller countries that are less impacted by the virus. Emerging destinations such as Sweden and Israel have seen a rise in the number of applications from India — a stark contrast with the traditional favourite destinations including US, UK, Canada, and Australia that are expecting a decline in the number of international applications. While Indian universities are still closed, Israel has permitted international students to enter the country and start their studies for 2020-2021 academic year. A special chartered flight from Mumbai to Tel Aviv brought 100 returning and new PhD and postdoctoral researchers at all the eight research universities in Israel. New Zealand which has been rebranding itself among Indian students and offering several scholarships to boost international admissions lately has also allowed students to join the physical campuses.  

Exam Updates

CAT 2020 Mock Test link released, exam on November 29

6th November 2020 | Times Now

Common Admission Test, CAT 2020 Mock Test link has been released on the official website iimcat.ac.in. The admission test for Indian Institutes of Management, IIMs would be conducted by IIM Indore on November 29. Candidates who have registered for the exam are advised to go through the mock test on the link provided below to understand the process of the computer-based test.

NEET Counselling 2020 final results declared

7th November 2020 | Hindustan Times 

The Medical Counselling Committee declared the final results of National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET): MBBS and BDS undergraduate first round of counselling. Candidates can check their seat allotment results on the official website at mcc.nic.in.

NEET-PG exam 2021 postponed

3rd November 2020 2020 | Indian Express

The National Board of Examinations (NBE) has deferred the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) for PG exam. The provisional schedule for conduct of NEET-PG 2021 as announced by NBE stands postponed till further notice. Earlier, NEET-PG exams were scheduled to be held on January 10. Meanwhile, the applications are open for NEET MDS, which is a PG exam for dentistry. NEET MDS will be held on December 16, Foreign Medical Graduates Examination (FMGE) on December 4, and DNB Post Diploma Centralised Entrance Test (DNB PDCET 2021) on January 28. 

JEE Advanced 2021 will be open for the third attempt, direct appearance for affected candidates

7th November 2020 | Aglasem

Joint Admission Board (JAB) has decided that students who missed the Joint Entrance Examination (JEE) Advanced 2020 shall be provided with a second attempt next year. The provision is only those candidates who were not able to take the test due to COVID-19. Authorities further stated that these students will not have to re-qualify the JEE Mains 2021 exam and can directly appear for JEE Advanced 2021. The decision came days after a few students appealed to the Ministry of Education and Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi to conduct a re-examination for students affected by the pandemic.

School of Open Learning, University of Delhi Results 2020 declared for BA, B.Com 2nd  semester exams

3rd November 2020 | Hindustan Times

The School of Open Learning, University of Delhi has declared the DU SOL 2020 result for BA (Honours) in English, Political Science, BCom (Honours), BA and BCom (CBCS) exams for second-semester students. The students of the second semester who have taken the examination can check the merit list by visiting the official website at sol.du.ac.in. The result has been prepared based on the assignments submitted by the students.

Mumbai University backlog exam for first and second-year students to start from November 30

5th November 2020 | First Post

The University of Mumbai has asked all its affiliated colleges to conduct backlog examination for first and second-year students from November 30. The detailed schedule for the examination will soon be released by the Mumbai University on its official website: mu.ac.in.

Anna varsity supplementary exam from November 17

7th November 2020 | Hindustan Times

Anna University will conduct supplementary exams from November 17 to 21 for all the terminal semester candidates who had technical issues during the online exams held in September-end. The proctored online exam will be conducted for candidates in the university departments and the non-autonomous affiliated colleges.

YouTube Discussions

Education Conclave: Decoding the future in times of change

5th November 2020 | IDP India

In this session, industry experts from all over the globe discuss prevalent topics in the international education industry. The speakers and panellists in this virtual global education conclave share their insights on issues such as redefining international education, newer models of education delivery, shift in student perspectives, current trends, reformatory measures and future of work, along with the digital transformation of the international education industry. This is a session of interest for students, their parents, and everyone who’s associated with the international education industry. Watch Video


Private university enrolment dips

07th November 2020 | Newage Bangladesh

The enrolment of private university students in the summer semester drastically dropped amid the COVID-19 outbreak as students lost their financial ability to continue education at such universities that usually charge a huge amount of tuition fees. Association of Private Universities of Bangladesh data shows that enrolment in this summer semester at the private universities fell by up to 88% compared to the summer semester of 2019. The universities enrolled students on the online summer semester programmes in June taking special permission from the government when all educational institutions remained closed due to COVID-19.

University Grants Commission (UGC) allows private universities to hold practical classes, exams following guidelines

02nd November 2020 | Dhaka Tribune

The University Grants Commission (UGC) has published guidelines for private universities on conducting laboratory-based practical classes and examinations of their final year students vowing to maintain all health safety guidelines amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The directives include not conducting more than one class or exam in a day, maintaining the health safety guidelines issued by WHO, not allowing more than 10 students in a class or exam hall, and to conduct oral tests online. The UGC asked the private universities to ensure that no student should enter the campus more than 30 minutes before their exam or class and leave within 30 minutes of finishing their respective exam or class.

Exam Updates

Dhaka University to drop social science and fine arts faculties admission tests

8th November 2020 | United News of Bangladesh

Dhaka University has decided to drop the undergraduate admission tests of D and E units, held for social science and fine arts faculties from the 2021-22 academic year. The university will only arrange admission tests for three units: science, arts, and business studies from now. However, there will be no change in this year’s admission test. The new decision will be effective from the next one.


12th graders in Nepal are taking final exams in the new model

05th November 2020 | Online Khabar

the pandemic, the National Examination Board has introduced a whole new procedure to conduct these exams this year. As per the (Class 12) Student Evaluation, Examination Operation, Management, Documentation and Certification Working Procedure made public by the board, the 12th graders will be partially evaluated based on the marks obtained by them in the grade 11 last year. Likewise, internal evaluations by the schools have also been given significant weight. Educationists, teachers, and students have mixed views on this new modality. Whereas the proposed model is likely to help the country’s examination system improve and students feel better amid the pandemic, they have also expressed serious concerns over some provisions.

Alternative teaching methods only option to continue students’ learning

02nd November 2020 | Devdiscourse

With schools being closed due to the spread of COVID-19, alternative teaching methods are the only option to continue students’ learning in Nepal. In September 2020, UNESCO’s Capacity Development for Education (CapED) Programme in Nepal organized a training session to enhance teachers’ ICT tools skill and to guide them on how to deliver lessons through online platforms, as well as via radio and TV. The effectiveness of distance education largely depends on the facilitation of teachers. The importance of tackling teachers’ capacity gaps on distance teaching was one of the identified challenges that came out of UNESCO-led consultations carried out in the context of the UN’s framework for the immediate socio-economic response to COVID-19. To support the continuation of learning, CapED has also helped launch an educational radio programme – Radio Pathshala – in May 2020. In collaboration with the Government and Association of Community Radio Broadcasters Nepal through its 200 radio stations, the programme is now covering 77 districts throughout Nepal.

Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka extends the school holidays for two more weeks

03rd November 2020 | The National Herald

Authorities in Sri Lanka have extended the school holidays for two more weeks, postponing the opening of classes amid a surge of COVID-19 patients from two clusters in Colombo and the capital’s suburbs. Schools had been scheduled to reopen November 9th, but the government announced that classes would not resume until November 23rd. Schools were suddenly closed last month as a precautionary measure after a new cluster of coronavirus infections centred on a garment factory erupted in the densely populated Western province, home to the capital.

GCE Advanced Level examinations held successfully at the Infectious Diseases Hospital

5th November 2020 | Sunday Observer

27 students who were tested positive for COVID-19 faced the GCE Advanced Level Examination at the Examination Centre at the Infectious Diseases Hospital (IDH) successfully, stated the National Operation Centre for Prevention of COVID-19 Outbreak.

Ordinary Level Examination to be held as scheduled in January 2021

6th November 2020 | Menafn

The GCE Ordinary Level Examination 2020 will be held as scheduled from January 18 to 28, the Education Ministry confirmed. In August the Education Ministry had announced that schools will close for the third term holidays on Christmas Eve while the GCE Ordinary Level Examination 2020 will be held in January.


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