Sri Lanka to bring forward GCE O/Level, A/Level exams to allow early university entrance

Sri Lanka will bring forward the GCE Ordinary Level and Advanced Level exams to allow school students an early university entry, a top minister said.

School students in Sri Lanka generally sit for GCE O/Ls and A/Ls at the ages 16 and 19 respectively.

Co-cabinet spokesman Minister Keheliya Rambukwella told reporters today that the cabinet of ministers has approved a proposal to bring forward the O/L exam by four months from December to August and A/Ls by nine months from August to December in the preceding calendar year. The shift is expected to save students 13 months, he said.

“Our analyses have shown that in developed countries, students enter university at the age of 16 or 17, but in Sri Lanka, due to various reasons, students don’t enter university until they’re 19 or 20,” said Rambukwella.

Meanwhile, the cabinet has also decided to restructure the syllabi of Grades 10 and 11 in order to cover the GCE O/L curriculum in one year and nine months, a statement from the Government Information Department said.

Students will be selected for university entrance based on their A/L Z-score without before re-correction of exam papers is completed.

“If there are students whose results can be upgraded across the re-correction process, they should be awarded new marginal Z-scores so that they would be able to undergo the relevant degree courses and apply this methodology with effect from 2020 Advanced Level,” the statement said.