Coronavirus: With DSE exams delayed, Hong Kong universities start making back up plans

Education officials say they may assess students using internal school results or delay the start of the new school term.

The assessments are due to begin April 24.

Wong Tsui-kai |

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Hong Kong universities have said they will monitor the Covid-19 situation closely and make adjustments on admissions as needed.

The annual HKDSE exams are among the events that may be affected by the ongoing Covid-19 epidemic. The exams were originally scheduled to start on March 27, and were then delayed until April 24. 

Education officials are now believed to be making backup plans in case exams are further delayed or completely cancelled, and consulting publicly-funded universities. These backup measures may include assessing students using internal school results.

According to a government source, some university leaders have agreed that if the exams are delayed until July, the start of the new school term should be postponed to October. Young Post asked several universities in Hong Kong what they’re doing to prepare for this possibility.

The HKDSE schedule at your fingertips 

The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) said it is maintaining close contact with the Education Bureau and other departments concerning the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on university admissions. “The university has explored various solutions in light of the latest developments and will announce the admission arrangements for the new academic year later,” said a spokesman.

A University of Hong Kong spokesperson said they are “closely monitoring the pandemic situation. We will continue to pay close attention to the government’s arrangements regarding the release of public exam results and will do our best to facilitate where appropriate. In the meantime, the university will continue to fairly assess all applications while being flexible to students ... impacted by Covid-19.”

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City University said they have been “closely monitoring and proactively responding to the development of the pandemic”. They also hope the situation will ease and allow for students to take the HKDSE examination. “However, if the examination has to be further delayed or cancelled due to the pandemic, the university is prepared to be flexible and will consider available options to help students progress to higher education,” a spokesperson said. 

At present, the scheduled date for HKDSE results is July 15, according to the Jupas website.