Exam 2021 FAQs

Exam 2021 FAQs

The Caribbean Examinations Council’s (CXC®) proposal for the strategy for the administration of the 2021 regional summer examinations was formulated following extensive consultations, led by the Ministries of Education at the national level and inclusive of local stakeholders in education. The primary focus was to ensure that the administration of the regional examinations would not disenfranchise the region’s students, in light of disruptions to the education system caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and the volcanic eruption in St Vincent and the Grenadines. 


1 . What are the dates for examinations and when will timetables be available?

  • Caribbean Primary Exit Assessment™ (CPEA™): 27 – 28 May 2021
  • Caribbean Certificate of Secondary Level Competence® (CCSLC®): 9 – 12 August 2021
  • Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate® (CSEC®) and Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examination® (CAPE®): 28 June – 30 July 2021
  • Caribbean Vocational Qualification* (CVQ*) May – August 2021. Dates to be determined by individual participating territories

St. Vincent & the Grenadines

  • Caribbean Primary Exit Assessment™ (CPEA™): 27 – 28 July 2021
  • Caribbean Certificate of Secondary Level Competence® (CCSLC®): 23 – 26 August 2021
  • Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate® (CSEC®): 2 – 20 August 2021
  • Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examination® (CAPE®): 16 August – 3 September 2021 and
  • Caribbean Vocational Qualification* (CVQ*) October 2021.

Timetables may be accessed on our website at www.cxc.org/download-timetables. Candidates can access their individual timetables online, via the Student Portal at https://ors.cxc.org:8462/studentportal

Results will be made available to the Ministries of Education during the last week of September 2021 and students will receive their results during the first week of October 2021.


2 . When will the results of the examinations be released?

Results will be made available to the Ministries of Education during the last week of September 2021 and students will receive their results during the first week of October 2021.

Due to the new examination dates for St Vincent and the Grenadines, candidates there will receive their results later than the first week of October 2021. We will release confirmed dates via our official website and social media.


3 . During the school year, my class time was reduced because of COVID-19 restrictions and I am not ready for examinations. Can I withdraw from my examinations?

CXC® implemented a facility for candidates registered for the June/July 2021 Examinations, to defer sitting examinations and submitting School Based Assessments (SBAs), until the January CSEC® 2022 sitting or the May/June CAPE®, CSEC® or CCSLC® 2022 sitting. There will be no fee charged for the deferral of examinations.


I. SBA scores can be transferred for use in the next examination sitting, where the subject is offered.

II. The rules pertaining to the reuse of SBA scores for resit candidates remain unchanged.

III. Candidates may also:

– submit a new SBA

– delay submission of SBAs until the chosen sitting

IV. For the first time, CXC® will accept SBAs in January 2022 for candidates deferring to sit examinations for subjects offered in that period.

The deadline to indicate an intent to defer from the June/July 2021 examination cycle was 31 May 2021. Approved candidates will have until their local registration deadline to indicate which 2022 sitting they are deferring to.

4 . How will the Caribbean Examinations Council® ensure physical distancing is observed during the examination? 

CXC® will rely on local officials in each territory, to ensure that public health guidelines are maintained.

5 . If I have to miss an examination because I am in quarantine, what should I do?

In-School Candidates who may miss an examination due to quarantine should report the matter immediately to their school, Private Candidates should report the matter to the CXC® Local Registrar (the Overseas Examination Commission in the case of Jamaica). A formal report should be submitted to CXC®, along with verification from the Quarantine Centre, Ministry of Health or relevant authority in their territory. Missed examinations will be rescheduled in 2022.

6 . Does CXC® intend to proceed with examinations despite increases in COVID-19 cases across the region?

CXC’s first priority is the health and safety of its stakeholders and takes all feedback under consideration. In light of feedback from stakeholders, a Special Meeting of Council, which is comprised of regional government representatives, was held on Tuesday, 25 May 2021 and members reviewed and accepted a report from CXC’s School Examinations Committee (SEC), that made recommendations on the strategy for the 2021 regional examinations and further concessions, including a two-week delay to the start of examinations.

7. Wouldn’t it be safer to use predictive scoring or SBA marks as the final grade instead of conducting examinations?

As a public body operating across several territories, we need a common assessment (Paper 01 and/or Paper 02) to ensure that marks are standardised. Therefore, we are unable to use predictive scoring or SBAs alone.

8 . If schools have not finished the syllabus and are unable to finish it, will CXC® reduce the topics covered on the examination to address this? 

It has been determined that any change, at any level, to the programme of studies offered by CXC® can prove disadvantageous to stakeholders and impact CXC’s ability to compare results across years in terms of equivalence of certification.

The one-month delay in the schedule of this year’s examinations will allow for additional instructional time as teachers and students prepare for examinations.

CXC® submitted to all Ministries of Education, for distribution to candidates, the broad topics to be assessed on Paper 02, on 10 May, in advance of the administration of examinations. This was done for subjects where such details were not already specifically available in the syllabus. It should be noted however, that for all subjects, all topics are covered on Paper 01.

CXC® also undertook a review of the broad topics based on stakeholder feedback, and released a revised version on 28 May 2021.

9 . Face-to-face time at schools has been reduced, will CXC® change the structure of School-Based Assessments to address this? 

Following consultations with external resource persons, representatives from the Ministries of Education, school administrators and teachers, it was determined that there would be a reduction in the number of practicals/assignments and changes to the approach to the implementation of the SBA. CXC® will maintain the strategy of 100% SBA moderation, across all centres, for all subjects in 2021.

Details of the modified SBA strategy were provided to CXC® Local Registrars in November 2020 and a handbook – “Treatment of Syllabuses and the School-Based Assessment for Administration of Examinations in 2021 Handbook for Students” was published on the CXC® website in December 2020. Additionally, submission deadlines for SBAs have been extended to June 2021.

10 . What is the deadline for SBA submissions? 

Principals and teachers will set the dates in order to meet the deadlines stipulated by the CXC® Local Registrar in the territory.

11 . If examination results are returned in the last week of September, I will miss my university deadline. Can I get my results earlier?

A). The University of the West Indies (UWI) has agreed that candidates applying for admission in 2021 can qualify as normal matriculants to The UWI if they:
I. have passed at least two (2) CAPE® subjects, either at Unit 1 or 2, with Grades I – IV;

II. also have the requisite CSEC® subjects; and

III. are currently registered for either Unit 1 or 2.

B). Consultations on the 2021 examination administration strategy will also be held with the American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers (AACRAO).

C). For students applying to international higher education institutions, it is possible to make an Early Results Release request. This allows results to be sent quickly to universities/colleges, within a few days after the release of the official examination results.

To submit an Early Results Release, kindly apply for a Transcript via the CXC® website. During the checkout process, in the notes section, please indicate that it is for ‘Early Release’ to allow for expedited processing.