The Inter Board Committee of Chairmen (IBCC) is the body established under a resolution of the Ministry of Education. Among a lot of functions, the basic function of IBCC is to decide and grant equivalence to foreign qualifications with corresponding Pakistani certificates at Secondary School Certificate/Matriculation, Higher Secondary School Certificate/Intermediate, technical education as well as local diplomas and certificates with the comparable being issued by the IBCC.
Moreover, IBCC has been assigned with the assignment of attestation of certificates and diplomas issued by the BISE and BTE in Pakistan for those candidates who want to go abroad for further education or employment purposes.
The rules for equivalence of IBCC for British, American, Canadian and other school systems are slightly change from each other. Below are the rules and regulations for equivalence for O & A levels for each education system.
- RULES FOR EQUATING QUALIFICATIONS AND MARKS
1.1 EQUIVALENCE OF QUALIFICATIONS
The major principle for equivalence of qualification is to identify the relevant stage in Pak. System by considering the number of schooling years and subjects of a foreign system, if the system does not match with the Pakistani model.
- British System
- GCE ‘O’ Level, GCSE, IGCSE and Equivalent:
GCE ‘O’ Level is considered equivalent to Secondary School Certificate (SSC) subject to meeting the requirement of Scheme of Studies as under:
- Pakistan Based Examinations: Eight subjects including Compulsory English, Mathematics, Urdu, Islamiyat, Pakistan Studies and three electives.
- Overseas Based Examinations: Five subjects including English, Mathematics and three electives.
To qualify for Science Group it is necessary to pass Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics and Biology/Computer Science. Rest will be placed in General/Arts/Humanities Group.
- GCE ‘A’ Level and Equivalent:
GCE ‘O’ and ‘A’ level are considered equivalent to Higher Secondary School Certificate (HSSC/Intermediate) subject to meeting the specified requirement for various stream/groups as under:
- Pre-Medical Group: Eight/five ‘O’ level subjects (including English, Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry, and Biology) and three ‘A’ levels (Physics, Chemistry and Biology) with minimum E Grade.
- Pre-Engineering Group: Eight/five ‘O’ level subjects (including English, Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics Biology/Computer Studies) and three ‘A’ level subjects (Physics, Chemistry and Mathematics) with minimum E Grade.
- General Science Group: Eight/five ‘O’ level subjects with three ‘A’ level subjects
- Humanities Group: Eight/five ‘O’ level subjects including English and Mathematics with three ‘A’ level subjects.
- All Pakistani nationals appearing for examinations from Pakistan shall have to pass Urdu, Islamiyat, Pakistan Studies and Mathematics along with other required subjects to qualify for equivalence.
- If a Pakistani/dual national candidate studies and appears for examination from abroad, Urdu, Islamiyat and Pakistan Studies will not be considered compulsory requirements.
- American System
- i) Equivalence with SSC: Grade 9 and 10 from Accredited institutions with required number of credits.
- ii) Equivalence with HSSC: Grade 11 and 12 from Accredited institutions having Diploma with required number of credits.
Basic rules and requirements for Equivalence:
- Original High School
- Grade-9 thru 12 original Official consolidated (4 years) Transcript duly sealed, signed and embossed by the issuing authority, USA (by the Ministry of Education, Canada) and enclosed in an envelope to be opened by an officer or official of IBCC. Grade-9,10,11 and 12 Subjects should be recorded separately. Note: If the candidate has passed grade-9 thru 12 education through more than one institution then he/she will have to provide original official transcripts of each institute separately along with copy of accreditation of all the institutions. Otherwise case will be considered incomplete.
- Date of entrance and discharge of the candidate in concerned institution(s).
- Proof/ attested copy of Certificate of Accreditation of the concerned School with any one recognized US Department of Education Accrediting Associations of USA.
- Graduation requirements (total earned credits by the student and total required credits for Graduation High School Diploma).
- School Profile (i.e. High School Program Planning Guide/Course Description Guide etc.)
- Original Advance placement Grade Report duly issued by AP College Board, USA, sealed/enclosed in an envelope to be opened by an officer or official of IBCC in case of AP Courses.
- Explanation of abbreviation of the subjects and codes which are used in the student’s transcript.
- In case of USA, according to Scheme of Studies (SOS) of Pakistan, Physics, Chemistry & Biology for Pre-Medical and Physics, Chemistry & Mathematics for Pre-Engineering group as elective subjects must be passed at High School level (Grade-9 thru 12 level) for issuance OF Equivalence Certificate (Pre-Medical/ Pre-Engineering group). (Condition may be reviewed at any time)
- In case of Canada, according to Scheme of Studies (SOS) of Pakistan, Physics, Chemistry & Biology for Pre-Medical and Physics, Chemistry & Mathematics for Pre-Engineering group as elective subjects must be passed at Grade-9, 10, 11 as well as at Grade-12 (each year) for issuance of Equivalence Certificate (Pre-Medical/Pre-Medical group) of Pakistan. (Condition may be reviewed at any time)
- In case of early graduation, please provide proof from concerned institution/issuing authority.
- Attested Copy of Passport with valid visa portion, Stay proof during the study abroad and attested copy of CNIC of Pakistan.
- Four photo copies of each educational document must be attached herewith.
- Prepaid return envelope of best courier service (e.g. FedEx, DHL, and TCS) should be attached herewith for sending back the original documents to the applicant.
- Other general (relevant) requirements listed at serial No.V must be completed in all respect.
- As per policy of IBCC, educational documents of the student will be referred to concerned authority for verification/ clarification of the documents furnished to IBCC. Proper Equivalence Certificate will be issued after receipt of verification reply from concerned authority/institution.
- The students of US Institutions (AES/LPS) operating in Pakistan will have to fulfill IBCC Equivalence Criteria for US Schools (AES/LPS) operating in Pakistan for grant of Equivalence Certificate.
- The education qualification obtained through Institutions which are not accredited by any recognized Accrediting Association of USA or State Department of Education, USA cannot be considered for Equivalence of Qualification.
- As per rules of IBCC, education qualification obtained through ‘Distance Learning Education System’/ ‘Online System of Education’/ ‘Home Study’ cannot be considered for Equivalence of Qualification (107ECM-20).
- IBCC Criteria for American Schools (LPS/AES) operating in Pakistan must be fulfilled by the school/candidate for grant of equivalence of qualification.
- It was resolved that Diplomas/Certificates could be considered for equivalence of only qualification of those US Institutions/schools which are fully accredited by any recognized Accrediting Association of USA or any State Department of Education, USA. (127ECM-17)
1.1.4 Other Countries
- i) Equivalence with SSC passing of Grade 10 (10 years of schooling) from recognized examination Board or accredited institution.
- ii) Equivalence with HSSC: passing of Grade 12 (12 years of schooling) from recognized Board or accredited institution.
1.2 CONVERSION OF GRADES/MARKS
- For conversion into SSC equivalent marks five subjects at Secondary level or equivalent (10 years of schooling) including English, three electives (Physics, Chemistry, mathematics/Biology) and one overall best. (Being reviewed may be revised at any time)
- For conversion into HSSC equivalent marks five subjects at HSSC level or equivalent. (12 years of schooling including English, three electives (Physics, Chemistry, Biology/Mathematics) and one overall best. (Being reviewed may be revised at any time)
- GCE ‘O’ Level , GCSE, IGCSE and Equivalent:
- For conversion into SSC equivalent marks (grades of all the eight/ five subjects will be calculated for conversion into Pakistani marks.
- To qualify for Science Group Physics, Chemistry Mathematics and Biology/Computer Science are pre-requisite.
- GCE ‘A’ Level/HSSC or equivalent:
For conversion into HSSC equivalent marks:
- Pre-Medical: Eight/Five subjects of ‘O’ Level including English, Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics and Biology/Computer Studies plus three subjects of ‘A’ level i.e. Physics, Chemistry and Biology.
- Pre-Engineering: Eight/Five subjects of ‘O’ level including English, Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics and Biology/Computer Studies plus three subjects of ‘A’ level i.e. Physics, Chemistry and Mathematics.
- Humanities/General Group: Eight/Five subjects of ‘O’ level including English plus three subjects of GCE ‘A’ level.
- American System
- i) SSC: Two Years High School course (Grade-9 & 10) five academic subjects from Grade-9 and
five academic subjects from Grade-10, i.e. English, three elective subjects and one overall best academic subject.
- ii) HSSC: Completion of four years High School diploma and five academic subjects including English, three elective subject and one overall best academic subject at Grade 11 and 12 (excluding P. E. Drama, Music, Dance, etc. and study skills courses). (Grouping is subjected to qualifying required subjects as above.
- Canadian System
- The certificates and grades awarded by overseas accredited Examination Boards / Authority / Syndicate shall be equated as per approved formula of IBCC. The certificates and grades awarded by the institutions shall be first equated as per above formula and then subjected to further deduction of 10% marks (being internal evaluation). The actual marks from any foreign Examination Board / Authority / Institution will not be considered as such but treated as per formula of the IBCC for conversion.
- Any action/admission on the basis of provisional certificate will be at the risk and cost of the candidate.
- The IBCC reserves the right to withdraw and / or change / correct its certificates.
- Afghan qualification holders will be subjected to verification from issuing authority before issuance of Equivalence Certificate.
- Non-Muslim Pakistanis will pass Ethics in lieu of Islamiyat.
- Students of American type schools located in Pakistan shall have to complete the criteria laid down for LPS and AES*
- No certificate shall be issued to candidates having incomplete number of required subjects/credits.
- Appeal against these regulations first lies before the Chairman, IBCC and then the second before the Secretary, Ministry of Education being the Controlling authority of the IBCC. After having availed of remedies in the form of two appeals, if anyone still feels aggrieved, he may seek remedy, if any through court.
*LPS: stands for Local Private Schools following American System of Education, AES: American Embassy Schools in Pakistan.
METHODS FOR DETERMINING EQUIVALENCE OF FOREIGN QUALIFICATION
When an applicant approaches the IBCC Office for the determination of the equivalence of his/her foreign qualification the prescribed proforma/questionnaire is required to be filled by him/her. Through this questionnaire information about the following points is obtained:
- Accreditation/recognition status of institution:
The applicant is required to furnish information or documentary proof of the accreditation/recognition status of the institution from where he/she has passed the examination. If the Certificate/Diploma awarding body is the board or University then it is to be proved that it is authorised by Government of the country concerned to conduct examinations and issue Certificate/diplomas.
- Duration of the courses of study:
While determining the equivalence of the Certificate/Diploma it is kept in mind as to what is the duration of the course of study leading to the earning of the particular Certificate/Diploma. The duration of the foreign Certificate/Diploma should not be in any case less than the duration of the similar certificate or diploma in Pakistan. It may be more.
- The intensity of the course:
Alongwith the duration of the course of study, the number of days of study in a year and of hour of study in a day are also considered.
- Course contents:
When new cases of equivalence are determined the syllabus and course contents are also to be compared with the syllabus and course contents of the similar Certificate/diploma in Pakistan.
- Reference to the Ministries of Education and Embassies of the Foreign Countries:
In some cases the IBCC office seeks information or guidance from either the embassies of concerned countries in Pakistan or from the Ministries of Education of those countries through our embassies there.
- Translation of the original Certificate:
In many cases of foreign Certificate/Diplomas are in the national languages of those countries. In this case we get the Certificate/Diploma translated in English or in Urdu by National Institute of Modern Language in Islamabad.
- Consultation of subject experts:
In some cases the advice of the subject experts or experts of the specialised area is sought. Cases are also sent to the Technical Boards for their views.
- Consultation of the British Council Guide to International Qualifications:
In some cases we also consult the British Council Guide to International Qualifications of various countries, which is very useful.
IGCSE/GCE ‘O’ level
|F (before June 2010)||40|
|G (before June 2010)||35|
|(For Medical/Pre-Engineering Group) Subject of GCE ‘O’ level||Grade||Pak Marks|
Total = (720 × 900) /800 = 810/900
|(For Medical/Pre-Engineering Group) Subject of GCE ‘O’ level||Grade||Pak Marks|
|Subject of GCE ‘A’ level|
|Biology or Mathematics||A*||90|
Total (990 × 1100)/1100 = 990/1100 (Pre-Medical / Pre-Engineering group)