r Ministry of Defence - Sri Lanka


June 07, 2024

General Sir John Kotelawala Defence University (KDU) which is functioning under the purview of the Ministry of Defence clarifies regarding the admission of civilian students to the MBBS Degree Programme of KDU.

MBBS Degree Programme conducted by the Faculty of Medicine of KDU was commenced in the year 2009 mainly to cater to the need of lack of Medical Doctors in the Armed Forces of Sri Lanka. However, with the gradual fulfillment of the requirements of the Armed Forces, KDU started admitting civilian students to the MBBS Degree Programme who are children of expatriates of Sri Lanka bringing much needed foreign exchange to the country, from the year 2013.

Further, in 2017 a total of 864 civilian students registered for the MBBS Degree Programme at the South Asia Institute of Technology and Medicine (SAITM) were absorbed into the KDU. Further, in 2022, 87 civilian students were sent from the University Grants Commission for the MBBS Degree Programme to resolve an issue that arose as a result of change in admission criteria/ policy of the National Universities.

Accordingly, a total of 1337 civilian students had been admitted to the MBBS Degree Programme of KDU and of them 828 students have graduated since 2018 up to 2023. If the opportunities available at the Faculty of Medicine of KDU, after enlisting the required number of Medical Officer Cadets of the Armed Forces, are not utilized effectively, the financial investments, infrastructure facilities and human resources of the Faculty of Medicine and the University Hospital (UHKDU) will be in vain, while the country is facing severe shortage of medical professionals.

The Cabinet of Ministers made a Policy Decision on 08th April 2024 to grant approval to admit domestic civilian students for the MBBS Degree Programme on fee levying basis from the year 2024. Accordingly, an advertisement calling for applications from potential candidates with local G.C.E (Advanced Level) qualifications or equivalent foreign examination qualifications such as Cambridge, Edexcel and such other examinations was published on the University website on 19th April 2024 and in National Newspapers in Sinhala, Tamil and English Languages on 21st April 2024.

The above advertisement indicated inter alia the eligibility criteria and the closing date of application. Consequently, a total of 956 applications were received by the closing date and the List of such Applicants was published on the University website with their Z-scores or results of foreign examinations.

After screening the said applications, out of 868 eligible candidates, a total of 242 were shortlisted by the ‘Admissions Committee’ to attend the Aptitude Test. Candidates with local G.C.E. (A/L) results were shortlisted using the minimum Z- score published by the UGC for entry to MBBS Degree Programme in other State Universities in the year 2021, which is 1.4059. Candidates with foreign examination qualifications were shortlisted using the minimum grades obtained as A, A and B. Number allocated for each category was determined based on the proportion of applications received. Accordingly, 216 and 26 candidates became eligible from the two categories respectively.

The Aptitude Test comprising three (03) components i.e. Paper 1 comprising Multiple Choice Questions (MCQs) on Subject Knowledge, Intelligence Quotient (IQ) and General Knowledge, Paper 2 on English Language and Paper 3 on Psychometric Assessment, were conducted on 14th May 2024 at the University premises, and a total of 203 candidates (183 from local G.C.E A/L and 20 from foreign qualifying examinations) appeared for the Aptitude Test. Those candidates were called for the Structured Interview which was held on 20th, 21st and 22nd May 2024. Accordingly, 158 with local G.C.E A/L qualifications and 20 with foreign examination qualifications appeared for the Structured Interview.

The Interview Panel, approved by the Board of Management of KDU, comprised representatives from the University Grants Commission and Sri Lanka Medical Council, as observers, in addition to the internal staff members of KDU. At the Structured Interview, marks were allocated as 90% to G.C.E A/L or Foreign Qualifying Examination results and 10% to other achievements such as nationally recognized sports activities and proven leadership qualities and abilities.

The details of Eligibility Criteria for applying to the MBBS Degree Programme at KDU, composition of the Admissions Committee, Structure of the Aptitude Test, Composition of the Interview Panel and Allocation of Marks for Final Selection are published on the University website.

The details of candidates selected to follow the MBBS Degree Programme at KDU and the Agreement containing the conditions which the selected candidates are required to enter with the University at the time of registration have also been published on the University website.

In the light of the above stated clarification, it would appear that the KDU has taken every possible measure to avoid any irregularity in selection of candidates and also to uphold the principle of good governance by ensuring openness, transparency and accountability in the selection process.

Moreover, if any candidate is found to have provided false information, after selection, the University will take steps to terminate such candidate’s studentship in accordance with the terms of the Agreement entered into between the candidate and the University.

KDU Administration assures the candidates and their parents, medical professionals, university community and the general public that the process of admission of civilian students to the MBBS Degree Programme of KDU, was fair, reasonable and lawful.