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Students in India are used to an academic cycle that begins in June / July each year and ends in May / June the next year. Thus Indian universities have one “intake” per year. This means that Indian universities admit students to their programs once a year. Most popular countries abroad have more than one intake. So if you miss the deadline for one intake, you can always apply in the next one. Read on to understand the number of intakes and which intake to apply to.
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Number of intakes
Generally universities abroad have two intakes: fall and spring. For the fall intake, classes usually commence in August or September and for the spring intake classes usually commence in January. The primary reason universities have more than one intake is to distribute the number of students who join the university each semester. Another reason why universities have multiple intakes is to provide students with more flexibility in terms of deciding when they wish to take admission and begin their studies.
Which intake to choose
The number of students that apply for the fall intake is usually higher than the number of students that apply in the spring intake. This doesn’t mean that the fall intake is “better” than the spring intake. It just so happens that the majority of the students complete their high school / undergraduate studies at a time of the year (April / May) that allows them to plan for the fall intake better. You can refer to the table below to decide which intake is best for you:
Available at all universities
May not be available at a few universities
More students apply in fall and therefore the acceptance rate tends to be lower than the spring intake
Less students apply in spring and therefore the acceptance rate tends to be higher than the fall intake
Availability of Scholarships
More scholarship funds are available with the university in Fall
Universities might have lesser funds available to dole out scholarships in Spring