The University of the Philippines system will forego this year's UPCAT because of the COVID-19 pandemic, joining other higher learning institutions that ditched their annual entrance exams.
The University of the Philippines System announced the news on Tuesday that the University Council, the highest academic body which unites different UP campuses, "unanimously voted NOT to administer UPCAT" due to various logistical and health concerns brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The university instead will come up with a modified admission system that will utilize "big data analytics" to arrive at a UP admission score model, they said. The new admission guidelines is set to be released by February 2021.
The University Council was earlier presented with five options, among them the idea of scrapping the UPCAT and relying on the applicant's submission requirements instead.
"There is obviously no perfect option among those offered. But it's understandable that the pandemic situation has pushed the university to decide on its own for its admissions, similar to other universities," said Isaac Punzalan, UP student regent.
"We must take into consideration our minimum demands of safety, inclusivity, maximum number of accepted applicants, and compassion for the marginalized," Punzalan said.
The UPCAT is one of the most anticipated college entrance examinations in the country with over 100,000 takers and a passing rate of 10 to 15 percent.