UKiset: a Test for International Students applying to Independent British Schools
- February 27, 2018
- Posted by: Amelia Buckworth
- Category: Schools
Competition amongst international students for a place at a leading, independent British school to enhance their future prospects is increasing. And sitting the UKiset is becoming a part of the application process.
Over the course of the past three years, this English, Maths and Verbal and Non-Verbal Reasoning test comparing the levels of international students with that of British students has become increasingly widespread. UKiset now assesses about 22% of the international applicants entering Independent Schools Council institutions, including Brighton College – a top ranking school in England that gets students into leading universities, and is particularly popular amongst international families.
The UKiset can be sat once every six months, and test scores remain valid for a year. UKiset thus recommends taking the test for the first time a year before the application period, so as to identify the candidate’s strengths and weaknesses. This leaves ample time to develop specific skills, strengthen the applicant’s profile, and re-take the test closer to the time of application, usually between August and November. Most candidates take the test in Year 11 to apply to sixth form, but over the course of the past three years the ages of the candidates have varied between 9 and 18 years.
UKiset does not determine how a school uses the test results provided – some schools use it as a filtering tool, others as an entry test that forms part of a broader application. Either way, the test is playing an increasing role in helping schools determine whether or not international applicants meet their standards of entry.
UKiset is in the course of changing the English section of the test, and seeks to provide a more detailed breakdown of candidates’ reading and listening abilities. Over the past three years, internationals have struggled most with this section, and performed far better in Maths and Non-Verbal Reasoning.
There is evidence to suggest that an increasing number of international students will be taking the test in Thailand, Malaysia, Hong Kong and Mainland China. Currently, candidates registering for the UKiset come from 125 different countries, and the proportion of female and male candidates is fairly equal. About 59% of these candidates are receiving advice from an academic agent to help them navigate the British system, make the best choice of schools and improve their applications.
For any advice on how to apply to independent British schools, please do not hesitate to get in touch: firstname.lastname@example.org