Image Source: The Advisor

With the introduction of Choice Based Credit System (CBCS), the marksheet presented to us contain our marks in seemingly encrypted forms. When I came across my result in Semester I, I had no clue what these so-called ‘credits’ represented!

What exactly is a credit?

As per the UGC, a credit is a unit in which course work is measured. I’ll make it simpler: a credit is a unit of time (hours generally). Thus, if a subject has 2 credits, it means that it requires two hours of teaching per week. Thus, credits basically determine the number of hours of instructions required per week.

The case is a little different with subjects that also include practicals. In that respect, one credit is equivalent to one hour of teaching and two hours of practical per week. Consider the following sample marksheet:

Sr. noPaper CodePaper NamePaper TypeSemCreditGrade letterGrade PointCredit Point
2123456Atomic StructureCOREI6B+742
3123456Animal DiversityCORE I6B+742

As you can see, the 3 core courses have 6 credits each. This generally means that each course would require 4 hours of theory (4 credits) and 4 hours of practical (2 credits) per week.

Just next to the credit column is present the Grade letter column. It is the same as you had in the CCE system: it is simply a key to the marks obtained. The Grade Point is a number allotted to each grade letter. Thus O is the best grade in a paper, equivalent to 10 Grade points.

The Credit Point is Grade Point multiplied by Credits. For example in the Biodiversity paper (6 credits) in the table above, the Grade point is 7. Thus, Credit Point will be 6×7=42.



To calculate SGPA, the Total Credit Points are divided by the Total Credits. For example, in the above table, the SGPA is 162/22= 7.36.

The CGPA is simply an average of the SGPAs.

Decoding the credits in your marksheet
Image Source- Indian Express

The University Grants Commission guidelines for the adoption of the Choice Based Credit System can be downloaded from here.

I hope that next time when you see your results, you know what those figures actually represent. If you have any query, feel free to drop them in the comments section below!


  1. Thanks for this helpful article!

    Do you know how much minimum marks are needed out of 100 for grade D or P?

    And what’s the credit for DSE paper type (which starts from 3rd year) for optional subject in honours course?

    • In my opinion grade D is equivalent to 40 marks, which is the minimum passing marks.
      The DSE has 6 credits for a science subject which has practicals.

  2. A very helpful and well-presented article indeed!

    I just wanted to know how are marks or percentages converted to grade points or grade letters? Are they fixed for specific intervals or are rank based?

    Any Formula ?

    • Thank you so much!
      I do not have verified sources to quote, but based on my experience it is absolute (based on fixed intervals).

      When CBCS was first introduced (in the year 2015), the system was relative and even History Hons students managed to score a perfect 10 SGPA. This is not the case now!

      The system changed next year and I am almost certain it is absolute now.

  3. Hi dear I want to know my subjects names studied in bsc general (PCM) marksheet it is only mentioned as paper 1 or 2…


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here