Council for the Indian School Certificate Examinations (CISCE)

ISC syllabus tweak for entrance exams 

Jhinuk Mazumdar
Jhinuk Mazumdar
Posted on 11 Apr 2024
05:57 AM
Representational image

Representational image File image

Revised curriculum will help students prepare better for engineering, medical courses: Council

The ICSE council has revised the syllabus of some of the subjects in Classes XI and XII, including the sciences.

The council said the syllabus had been “reviewed and revised” to help students appearing for engineering and medical entrance exams.

“The syllabus has been revised according to the requirements of the National Testing Agency (for engineering and medical entrance exams). The syllabus has been reviewed and revised so children do not lose out,” said Sangeeta Bhatia, deputy secretary of the Council for the Indian School Certificate Examinations (CISCE).


The National Testing Agency conducts the Joint Entrance Examination
(JEE) Main and the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance
Test (NEET) to screen students for admission to the undergraduate engineering
and medical courses, respectively.

The principals of several schools said ICSE students have been increasingly switching to the CBSE after their Class X exams because the central board is perceived to equip students better for the entrance tests.

In the first week of April, the council sent a circular to the principals saying the syllabus of some subjects had been revised for Classes XI and XII. Students who are enrolling in Class XI in the academic year 2024-25 will study the revised syllabus.

In Class XII, the syllabus has been revised in physics, chemistry, biology, mathematics, commerce, accounts, history, geography, political science, sociology, psychology and legal studies.

In Class XI, the syllabus has been revised in chemistry, biology, mathematics and

“The revised syllabus and its scope, for Class XII – ISC Year 2025 Examination – and Class XI – ISC Academic Year 2024-25 — are available on CISCE’s website.... You are required to kindly disseminate this information to all your students, teachers, parents and guardians,” the circular says.

The principal of Calcutta Girls’ High School, Basanti Biswas, was among those who hoped the change would help stem the switch to other boards.

“We are hopeful that with the change in syllabus, parents and students would realise that there is not much of a difference between the ISC syllabus and that of other boards and will not switch,” she

Several principals said the switch was mostly in the science stream.

“In the past few years, I have observed a trend among children (mostly science students) of joining the CBSE curriculum after Class X. Although the syllabus of most subjects is same in both curricula and the assessment is also similar, the shift to
CBSE in Class XI/XII continues to rise,” said Seema Sapru, principal, The Heritage School.

“Gradually, steadily, step by step, we have also seen the CISCE curriculum changing to meet the demands of the parents and students keen to write competitive exams,” Said Sapru.

In most schools, admission to Class XI has been completed and they have seen the shift even this year, too.

“In the past six-seven years, we are seeing 30 to 40 per cent of our students shifting to a CBSE school in Class XI. The council has been able to integrate portions which would benefit students in competitive exams but the results are yet to show,” said Terence John, principal, Julien Day School Kalyani.

John said there has to be a change in the mindset of parents and children.

“It is a thought lingering among parents that their children would do better in the JEE and the NEET if they switch boards. We do not see this attrition in other streams,” said John.

“We are particular about attendance and we cannot allow students to stay away from class, something that some of the parents demand in Classes XI and XII,” he said.

At least two principals said that not every student who switches boards is able to crack the competitive exam of his or her choice.

“Ultimately, they would settle for something which is not their preferred option,” said a principal.

Last updated on 11 Apr 2024
05:58 AM
Read Next