Korea intends to increase CSAT scores for students abroad.

User Profile Image

By admin

Posted on May 17, 2024


3 min read

Whatsapp Facebook LinkedIn

International acceptance of a nationalized exam that is administered in Korea is growing, which may help the nation increase the proportion of its students who study elsewhere. The nation’s standardized exam to “evaluate academic prowess and subject-specific expertise” is called the College Scholastic Aptitude Test, but it functions differently from the SAT or A-Levels.

According to Kyuseok Kim of the UWAY consultancy, no exam demonstrates the level of intensity seen in entrance exams in China, Japan, and Korea. On exam day, police cars transport students, and even the timing of airplane takeoff and landing is adjusted to accommodate exam schedules.

“It has been essential to the domestic educational system historically, but in the last four years, US and other foreign universities have been attempting to gain a foothold in the highly competitive Korean student market,” Kim said.

Due to their involvement in a new initiative to increase the use of the CSAT abroad, deans and directors of international admissions from several US universities, including State University New York’s four main campuses, Washington State, Rochester, and Miami, descended on Seoul in April for a study abroad fair.

“It was first introduced in South Korea in 2020, but it has quickly acquired traction and is currently supported by an increasing number of higher education institutions.

Kim clarified, “They see the test as a reliable measure of academic preparedness and potential, and they acknowledge its rigor.”

Under UWAY’s leadership, the CSAT Study Abroad Initiative is growing in the United States and is almost ready to include two colleges in the United Kingdom.

As the demand for American higher education has risen, Kim stated that “UWAY was recently visited by a dozen US universities eager to establish formal partnerships, with others wanting to tap into the South Korea market for the first time.”

Korea’s share of international students is gradually rising, especially in the US, where local students may be facing a demographic cliff. 39,491 South Korean students attended US universities in 2020–21. That figure increased by almost 40,000 in 2021–2022, and according to the most recent figures, it is now 43,847.

As Canada, the UK, and Australia develop and explore further restrictions that may deter international students, the US is also gaining ground. Although the campaign aims to have the test accepted outside of the US, Kim pointed out that the emphasis is on colleges and areas where there is a “significant” Korean diaspora.

“Students who started studying in the US with scores from the South Korean national examination have demonstrated outstanding academic performance, according to the narratives of admissions officers and counselors at CSAT-accepting institutions,” he reported.

Although he concedes that it may be too soon to determine if the project would be a “flawless” success, he believes that relying on an Asian standardised test such as the CSAT could accelerate Korean enrolment at a time when the US and other nations may require it.

He went on, “One of the most practical ways to diversify recruitment channels and expedite the assessment process is probably to trust in the validity of national standardized tests for college enrollment.”