In the past, this high-level degree was reserved only for monks. This qualification opens up new roles in teaching for Tibetan Buddhist nuns. The degree requires seventeen years studying the Five Great Canonical Texts (Shung Chen Kapo Nga) and an additional four-year course of demanding oral and written exams.
In November 2017, six more Tibetan Buddhist nuns became geshemas. This summer beginning in mid-August, forty-six nuns in total will be taking part in the exam process. Ten are completing their final year of exams.