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Holistic Admissions

The Admissions criteria and processes are based on holistic principles and values held by Ashoka University. All applicants will be evaluated on their level of engagement with their academics, extra-curricular activities, interests and potential within their unique life journeys and personal contexts. Throughout their academic and residential life at Ashoka University, students work towards developing faculties and values such as:

The image consists of five ribbons, each capturing the values Intellectual curiosity and critical thinking, Academic rigour, research, and writing. Open-mindedness and willingness to learn, Interdisciplinary and problem-solving approach, Resilience, tolerance, and teamwork

We ensure a strong focus on affirmative action based on social, personal, medical, geographical, and educational backgrounds, etc., and a merit-based admissions process. Our need-based financial aid process is open to students once they receive a firm offer of admission.

Admissions Process

Ashoka University’s holistic admissions process ensures that each application is evaluated in its unique context. Our admissions process is inclusive and has a strong focus on affirmative action. Upholding our long-standing commitment to diversity, we are mindful of applicants from various socio-economic and geographical backgrounds, learning needs, and physical impairments, along with their access to opportunities in both academic and non-academic spheres while processing applications and selecting students for the programme.

Please find the details and requirements of the stages involved in admissions below:

Stage 1: Application and Assessment

Application Requirements: Student and Family Details, Academic Scores (Classes X to XII), Non-Academic Engagement, Personal Essays, Letter of Recommendation (optional), SAT/ACT/CUET Scores (Optional)

Assessment Requirements: Ashoka Aptitude Assessment (Mandatory); On-the-Spot Essay (Mandatory)

Detailed instructions to register and start your application are listed below. Once an application form has been submitted within the deadline of a particular round, the applicant will be required to mandatorily participate in the Assessments on the date(s) mentioned in the Admissions Calendar. The Assessments consist of an On-the-Spot Essay (OSE) and the Ashoka Aptitude Assessment (AAA).

Please click here for detailed instructions regarding the Online Assessments scheduled for Round 3 applicants on Sunday, 21st April 2024 as per Indian Standard Time (IST).

On-the-Spot Essay; Mandatory (30 minutes)

The on-the-spot essay evaluates the following parameters: engagement with the prompt, critical thinking, clarity of thought, and creativity. The candidate will be given two topics to choose from at the time of writing the essay. The candidate cannot use any external resources to help them write the essay. The essay has no word limit and can be attempted with minimal preparation. Please click here to download sample essays and prompts for the On-the-Spot Essay.

A 5-minute break will be provided after the candidate attempts the On-the-Spot Essay section.

Ashoka Aptitude Assessment; Mandatory (90 minutes)

The Ashoka Aptitude Assessment has been developed to evaluate the thinking skills of the applicant. It consists of 40 questions (covering both Critical Thinking and Problem Solving) in 90 minutes. All questions are Multiple Choice Questions (MCQ). The assessment is designed to be taken with minimal preparation. There is no negative marking for wrong answers. The Ashoka Aptitude Assessment consists of the following:

(a) Problem-solving skills (includes numerical and spatial reasoning): The students will be given mathematical problems to solve – spanning across topics such as Data Analysis, Arithmetic, Basic Algebra, Visual Reasoning, and General Problem Solving

(b) Critical thinking skills (includes understanding arguments and reasoning using everyday language): The students will be tested on their ability to process a given excerpt and distill the key points being made, and critically analyse these points

Find sample questions from the Ashoka Aptitude Assessment linked here.


Stage 2: Shortlist for Interview

Select students are shortlisted for the interview stage once the Admissions Committee conducts a holistic in-depth review and evaluation of each application form and assessment.

The Ashoka Interview seeks to understand and get to know the candidate, their background and story. It also evaluates various parameters of the application form submitted by the candidate to gauge the candidate’s suitability to Ashoka University’s academic and residential life programme. The candidate will be interviewed by a panel. The time taken for the interview might vary depending on the interaction.

Stage 3: Decisions and Financial Aid

All final decisions are declared by the Admissions Committee. Once a student receives a firm offer of admission, the financial aid form is enabled for them. The financial aid process is separate from the admission process and in no way impacts a student’s admission at Ashoka.

Students may receive a confirmed offer, or conditional offer, be put on waitlist (and might receive a confirmed offer upon availability), deferral of decision, or denial of admission. If a student fails to participate in any stage as per process, their application will be annulled.



Registering and starting the Application Form

  1. An applicant needs to register with a personal email address (Gmail, Yahoo or Personal Domain IDs preferred) to start an application form.
  2. Use a personal email address and not a school or office-affiliated email address to ensure that they have access to this email address till the duration of their undergraduate degree programme
  3. All communication from Ashoka University will be sent only to the applicant’s registered email address

Instructions to fill in the Application Form

  1. The application form has multiple sections and is designed to capture all aspects of an applicant. The applicant is advised to carefully and thoughtfully engage with all the sections in the form
  2. You can move from one section to the next only after you have filled all the mandatory fields in the section. You will be able to revisit these filled mandatory fields to edit them later on
  3. The applicant should supply all relevant information in both mandatory and non-mandatory sections of the application form
  4. The applicant should attach all mandatory documents to prevent the application form from being considered ‘incomplete’. The applicant’s photograph, government identification document, and examination mark-sheets should be clearly visible and not password-protected
  5. Haryana Domicile Applicants will be required to submit their Government issued Haryana Resident Certificate (Domicile) to avail of benefits (if relevant) as per the Haryana Private Universities Act. Eligible applicants may attach a receipt of their Resident Certificates if they do not have access to their Haryana Domicile Certificate at the time of submitting their Application Form
  6. The applicant should attach collaterals (certificates, photographs, artwork, writing samples, web-links, letters of experience/completion/appointment, etc) for optional sections to substantiate their listed activities and areas of engagement
  7. The applicants are required to respond to the mandatory personal essay prompts. They should be written by the applicant and should aim to address the stated prompt/cue as genuinely as possible
  8. The applicant should get the consent of the recommender before enlisting the recommender’s name on the application form
  9. The applicant’s choice of preferred Majors under the Course Preference Section in the application form is only indicative in nature
  10. Ashoka University also offers extensive support to its students for English language, writing, learning disabilities, medical, mental health, and counselling.
  11. Please find the details for these support centres here: Support at Ashoka University. To enable the university to extend adequate support to the applicant during the admissions process and on campus (if made an offer of admission), the applicant is requested to submit all relevant details in the Support at Ashoka Section of the application form
  12. Please make sure that you click SUBMIT after you finish completing your application form.

Academic Bridge Programme

The Office of Admissions at Ashoka University seeks to support select students from each incoming cohort by offering them the chance to attend a fully-funded 3-week Academic Bridge Programme on campus prior to the start of the academic session. The Academic Bridge Programme aims to bridge the gap between their high school education and the Ashoka University classroom experience. The focus of the classes during the academic Bridge Programme is on the usage of the English language, academic reading and writing, thinking critically, synthesizing information, and presenting cogent arguments.

Classes are taught by tutors from Ashoka’s Undergraduate Writing Programme (UWP) and Centre for Writing and Communication (CWC). The Office of Admissions and the Office of Student Affairs co-host the residential life experience for the Academic Bridge Programme students, collaborating with the Office of Learning Support, the Ashoka Centre for Well Being, the Office of Academic Affairs, and the Career Development Office to offer workshops and special events to prepare and help students settle into their Ashoka journey.


The Office of Admissions follows the policies given below:

  1. Ashoka University does not have a policy of deferral of admission. An Offer of Admission is only valid for the academic session commencing at the end of the Admissions cycle in which the candidate has applied. If a candidate wishes to delay their joining by a year or more, they will have to re-apply and go through the entire admissions process within the Admissions Cycle for the academic session they wish to join.
  2. A candidate is eligible to receive a firm offer of admission from Ashoka University based on their overall performance in their academic and non-academic pursuits as well as their performance in the Assessment and Interview Rounds. The academic parameters requires a candidate to submit grades/scores from Grades X to XII. In the absence of Grade XII/Equivalent examination final scores, a candidate is required to submit Predicted Grades, which is considered as an indication of their performance in their final Grade XII/Equivalent examination results. However, no firm offers or decisions will be taken based on only the Predicted Grades of the candidate.
  3. All applicants will be required to appear for the Assessments and take the Ashoka Aptitude Assessment and write the On-the-Spot Essay. Applicants who submit their SAT/ACT scores in their Application Form are also required to take the Ashoka Aptitude Assessment. However, if their performance in the SAT/ACT is better than their performance in the Ashoka Aptitude Assessment, the higher score will be considered in the evaluation of their application.
  4. Indian applicants may send their official SAT scores to Ashoka University through the College Board portal for free. Our DI Code for SAT applicants is – 7343. All applicants applying with SAT/ ACT scores need to send us their official transcripts.
  5. Applicants will be shortlisted for the interview based on a holistic evaluation of their Application including their performance in the assessments. Shortlisted Candidates will appear for an interview within the round in which they have applied.
  6. Admissions decisions are rolled out at the end of each of the four rounds within the Admissions cycle. Once a candidate has participated in the interview, they can expect to receive one of the decisions/notifications mentioned below.


Types of Admissions Decisions

Offer of Admission – The candidate will be made a firm offer of admission, after which they are only required to pass their final Grade XII/Equivalent Examination

Conditional Offer of Admission – The candidate will be required to meet the conditions specified by the Admissions Committee in their decision notification

Wait-listed – The possibility of an Offer of Admission at the end of the admissions cycle or earlier based on the availability of seats but to be decided by the Admissions Committee.

Deferral of Decision – The Admissions Committee defers the decision of the candidate until the candidate submits their final Grade XII/Equivalent Examination scores.

Denial of Admission – The Admissions Committee denies admission to the candidate based on their overall performance in the holistic admissions process.

Annulment of Application or Candidature -The Admissions Committee annuls an application or candidature if the candidate fails to participate in all components of the admissions process or does not submit mandatory documents required by the committee.

Key Policies

In order to enrol in Ashoka University’s Undergraduate programme a candidate must have completed 12 years of school education which is recognized in their respective countries.

The application form requires the applicant to submit their grade sheet/mark sheet of the last 3 years of school education starting from the most recent one (Grade 10 to Grade 12).

Accepted Educational Boards:

  1. Ashoka University accepts students from all +2 level qualifications recognised by the AIU
  2. For International Baccalaureate (IB) students,  applicants enrolled under the Diploma Programme (IBDP), the IB Course (Certificate), and Career-related Programme are eligible to apply for the undergraduate programme at Ashoka University
  3. For students enrolled in the Cambridge Board, applicants must appear for a minimum of 3 subjects at the A-level to be eligible to apply to the undergraduate programme at Ashoka University
  4. For all other boards, we request students to share a conversion sheet/normalisation scale or any detailing around the grading/scoring system used by the board/school authorities with the Admissions Committee.


Discipline-Specific Policies

Please read our discipline-specific policies if you are interested in pursuing a major/ minor in the following disciplines

  • Economics
  • Economics and Finance
  • Economics and History
  • Politics, Philosophy, and Economics (PPE)
  • Mathematics
  • Computer Science
  • Computer Science and Entrepreneurial Leadership
  • Computer Science and Mathematics
  • Philosophy and Computer Science
  • Physics


Please click here to read Ashoka University’s policies on Mathematics courses offered by various educational boards.

For Ashoka University’s Educational Board-Specific policies, please click here.

Study at Ashoka

Study at Ashoka