In the last blog, we saw the fall 2020 course commencement decisions that the universities are likely to make.
As per the recent updates we received from the office of graduate and undergraduate admissions of a few universities, the fall 2020 admission process is going on and students who are still sending applications can connect with the admission office staff via video chat and email. Those who haven’t received any admits yet, have nothing to worry as the admission process will not be canceled and they will receive admits, though the decision may be released later than the usual time taken by the universities.
To update our students on the changing situations in the US due Coronavirus outbreak, we are publishing this blog that will be carried in three parts. In this first part, we shall provide you with firsthand information about student safety, fall 2020 admissions, and course commencement decision.
International student safety scenario
All the international students in the US are safe and have been asked to stay in their respective housing facilities within the US. For those who are on campus, many universities are providing temporary accommodations with fixed supplies until any other arrangements are made by the student. All the universities are offering only online classes for the spring 2020 semester. Universities have offered webinars to enable students to continue their studies and chat in real-time with the faculty members. Most universities have also shifted their administrative offices online. Students have also been provided with essential contacts and links to US Health Departments.
There is a lot of confusion overtaking the GRE® General Test if your test date is during the lockdown which has been put in effect till April 14, 2020. Due to the health and safety concerns for students and staff from the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, the ETS has postponed tests in many affected countries, including India. According to the latest update on the ETS website, the GRE® General Test and TOEFL iBT® Test have been postponed in India till April 11, 2020.
While both the GRE® General Test and the TOEFL iBT® Test are now being offered as Special Home Edition test, this is only available in the United States, Canada, Colombia, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Hong Kong (China) and Macau (China) from Thursday, March 26. India is not one of those countries: there is no Special Home Edition test for Indian test-takers.
If you are concerned about the rescheduling of your GRE® General Test or TOEFL iBT® Test, the ETS is regularly releasing updates taking into account the WHO directives and the local government orders. If the ETS postpones your GRE® General Test or TOEFL iBT® Test, you will be notified by email and your test will be rescheduled in your account. Check your account and your email regularly to confirm your testing status. If the ETS reschedules your test, the applicable fees will be waived (no rescheduling fees will be applied).
If your GRE® General Test or TOEFL iBT® Test is not postponed but you would like to reschedule, you must contact the respected services directly by sending a mail to the addresses provided below. This rescheduling will incur a fee.
To reschedule the GRE test:
To reschedule the TOEFL test:
To register for tests:
Test dates scheduled within the next 5–6 months are still open for registration for both GRE® General Test and TOEFL iBT® Test. Students can register for available dates on the GRE Tests registration website.
Important Links:GRE & TOEFL Tests
We have been getting several inquiries from the concerned family members and media regarding the impact of Coronavirus on the lives of foreign students and especially students from the academy currently studying in the USA. We wanted to clarify some of the questions regarding the same.
90% of the students from the academy live away from the campus, in private apartments which are less expensive and more convenient for our students. They usually live with a group of fellow Indian students, so they do have a support system. These students have not been impacted and continue to live in their own rented space.
For students who do live on the campus itself, some universities have asked students to look for housing out of the campus to encourage social distancing, however it is important to note that in many such universities – students can file applications to request an exception to the campus closure. Additionally, several U.S. universities are willing to work one-on-one with international students and assist them with accommodation during hardships.
In the majority of the universities, food service, campus health, libraries, and computer labs are open to supporting international students.
Additionally, university medical phone lines and medical services are open for diagnosis and potential testing of students who may show any symptoms or need medical attention.
Grocery stores are open all across the U.S.A and online food delivery services are open as well. Universities have been in constant communication with students regarding the COVID-19 outbreak and as a result, students were already alerted early on that they need to stock up on groceries and essential supplies. Medical pharmacies too, are open across the USA in all states. These pharmacies also carry basic food supplies which the students can purchase in case of emergency.
The majority of the US universities have canceled in-classroom instruction and have moved the classes online, and this will most likely continue for the entire spring semester.
For future students: coming from a country where coronavirus is present has no effect on whether students are admitted or not in the universities. The admissions process will continue as per the usual guidelines of each university.
We urge everyone to stay safe and take the utmost care during these times. We also want to ensure that there is no anxiety or incorrect information that can cause additional worry to friends and family in India.