11 October 2021
If you have taken a back seat on your dreams to secure an international education dream due to a backlog or two, here’s some good news.
A lot of international schools in popular countries such as the US, the UK, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, and Ireland gladly accept applications from candidates with backlogs, as long as you can clear them well before the end of your graduation or before you join your study program.
What are backlogs?
In basic terms, a backlog is a term for an exam that you have not been able to pass in your first attempt. A backlog might be due to the fact that you were unable to attempt the exam required for the course or because you were unprepared.
Whatever the reason might be, when your application gets accepted and you successfully join any international program, you need to ensure that all your previous backlogs are cleared.
What is a backlog certificate?
A backlog certificate is issued by your current academic institution which lists all the details regarding your backlogs. In case you do not have any backlogs, you do not need to worry about a backlog certificate.
However, in a lot of cases, there is still a chance that your foreign institution might ask for it along with your academic transcripts issued by your current institute in order to certify your academic records in detail even though you do not have any backlogs.
How are backlogs generally counted?
Most institutions count backlogs in different ways. Even though some of them may count the number of attempts that you needed to take before clearing a failed subject, many others might simply examine the number of backlogs you had per subject. Here is a brief overview of the kinds of backlogs:
The number of subjects considered equal to the total number of backlogs
In countries like the UK and the US, admissions committees for most universities consider the number of subjects you have failed as backlogs. They do not consider the number of attempts you have made to pass them.
For example, if you fail a subject but attempt to clear it thrice during various semesters, then the number of your backlogs will be considered as one. This gives Indian students a great opportunity to take as many attempts as they need to clear their backlogs.
The number of attempts to clear a failed subject is considered equal to the total number of backlogs
In countries such as Australia, universities take the number of attempts you made to clear a pending subject as backlogs. For example, if you fail a subject but attempt to clear it thrice during various semesters, then the number of your backlogs will be considered as three since it is equal to the number of times you appeared for the subjects.
However, you must keep in mind that these countries examine the number of attempts you made to judge your dedication to your education and primarily that subject.
Best countries for Indian students that accept backlogs
To study abroad, you don’t need to think of your backlogs as a major hindrance. As long as you take a look at the requirements of the program you are applying to, your backlogs will not affect your future.
You must however find out the specific criteria of the university you plan to join and the acceptance of backlogs in the country of your dreams. Here are the backlog criteria for some countries. However, you need to keep in mind that this changes from country to country such as:
Most Australian private universities do not accept more than eight backlogs. However Go8 universities in Australia only accept a maximum of three backlogs. Should you opt to join public institutions and not private ones, you need to have up to eight backlogs.
Canadian universities generally accept a maximum of up to five backlogs as long as you maintain a minimum average of 70% in your previous qualification.
Most universities in the US prefer students with zero backlogs but they do accept many exceptional cases at the same time. For example, they might offer admission if you have a maximum of five backlogs as long as you hold a good GRE score within 315-325.
Overall, your backlogs will not affect your admission and visa processing provided your university has already accepted your application. The best advice for Indian students with backlogs is to clear them before admission and aim at creating a strong academic profile overall.