Monday , May 27 2024

Graduation exemptions for IELTS entice more Vietnamese youths

Four times more 16–22-year-olds took the 2022 IELTS tests compared to 2018 as Vietnam exempts students with certain IELTS scores from testing for English on high school graduation exams.

According to a report on study of foreign languages in Vietnam released Wednesday by the Vietnam National Institute of Educational Sciences and the National Foreign Languages Project Management Board, the age of IELTS test takers in Vietnam is getting younger.

In 2018, over 50% of IELTS candidates were over the age of 23. There were only about 1.5% of test-takers aged 16-18, and over 13% were in the 19-22 age group.

After four years, the proportion of students aged 16-22 among total IELTS test-takers increased to 62%. The 16-18 age group accounted for 30%, a twentyfold increase from 2018.

The 19-22 age group more than doubled, while the group over 23 years old decreased by more than half, from nearly 52% to 20%.

The International English Language Testing System (IELTS) is an international English language proficiency certificate that is accepted by over 11,000 training institutions and organizations worldwide.

Since 2017, the Ministry of Education and Training has exempted the English test from the high-school graduation exams for students with IELTs certificates. For this year’s exam, the ministry designated that an IELTS score of 4.0 translates to a perfect score (10) on the English graduation exam.

In 2021, over 28,600 students used their IELTS scores to skip the English test. In 2022, that number rose to over 35,000, and then nearly 47,000 this year.

Dozens of universities consider candidates with IELTS certificates for admission.

Such moves by the ministry are a major cause of the increase in candidates in this age group, according to experts.

IELTS reported in September that Vietnamese scored an average of 6.2 on its tests last year.

Most Vietnamese scored between 6.0 (22%) and 6.5 (19%), according to the company.

Out of the 40 countries where the test was held last year, Vietnam ranked 23rd, along with South Korea and India.

The average IELTS band score, ranging from 0 to 9, is calculated by evaluating all four sections of the exam: reading, listening, speaking, and writing.

In 2022, the average scores for Vietnamese test takers was 6.4 each in listening and reading, 6.0 in writing, and 5.8 in speaking.

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