Wednesday, 2 April 2014

IELTs to be taken in Delhi, APR 02 - Hundreds of Nepali students are compelled to travel to India spending thousands of rupees to take International English Language Testing System (IELTS), a popular English proficiency test, due to lack of adequate quotas.
A significant rise in the number of students opting for overseas studies has shot up the demand of English tests--one of the requisites for admission into popular academic destinations in Australia, USA and UK.
According to Suchita Shrestha, MarComms and Learning Centre Manager at British Council, the sole body responsible for IELTS in the country, all the dates for the test are full till September.
This has left those opting for June/July intake in trouble. Education Consultancy Association Nepal (ECAN) estimates 200 students, who are planning for June/July intake, have been flying out to India, mainly Delhi, every fortnight for the tests.
"It's an unnecessary burden for us," said Sachdev Basnet, an MBA graduate, who is going to India for IELTS next week. For a test which could be completed for Rs 13,800 in Nepal, Basnet explained, a candidate will have to spend around Rs 50,000, including travel and accommodation costs and exam fee in India.
Those who are unwilling to travel to India will have to wait for January/February intake, according to ECAN officials. The volume of students taking IELTS has gone up by 80 percent this year compared to the previous year, said Shrestha. "The target of around 17,000 we set for April 2013 to March 2014 was achieved in six months by October 2013." The British Council conducts three tests a month, with around 1,000 students taking it in a single sitting. Ram Chandra Poudel of ECAN explained the number for IELTS candidates has soared as prospective students for Australia has shot up this year.
The Ministry of Education record shows more than 17,000 students have taken No Objection Certification (NOC) letter in the past eight months; out of them 9,000 are for Australia alone.
"The British Council has declined to increase quotas despite our repeated requests," Poudel lamented. He said an ECAN team will be urging the IDP in India to resume its service in Nepal to allow more students to take the test. The IDP (Australia) had been running IELTS tests in Nepal for a decade before closing its service last year.
Posted on: 2014-04-02 08:34
Kantipur Daily

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