JWL Employs a Multi-step Process for Acceptance into their Diploma Programme

Story by Jesuit Worldwide Learning

The admissions process for the Diploma in Liberal Studies programme at Jesuit Worldwide Learning (JWL) allows students to apply even if they lack formal accreditation from past schooling. It begins with a Call for Applications in the local community, with the site coordinator leading public information sessions about the programme. After applications are submitted, the students take the English exam.

Applicants who score at least a B2 level on the CEFR scale may advance to the written essay portion of the admissions process. The essay test consists of one essay prompt created by the academic director at JWL and reviewed by site coordinators.

University faculty members from Jesuit universities score the applicant essays based on compositional and grammatical ability. The English and Essay test scores are then combined to determine which applicants from each location will be invited for an in-person interview.

JWL students at the Dzaleka refugee camp attend orientation Photo: © 2016 JWL

The interviews focus on assessing the candidates’ language skills, understanding of the interview questions, determination to work in the Diploma program, rapport with the interviewers, and demonstration of intellectual curiosity. Individual scores are later aggregated for an overall interview score that determines ranking among the applicants.

The new cohort then spends two months in an on-site, pre-orientation programme led by their site coordinator. The pre-orientation programme covers computer skills, basic essay writing, source citation, utilising the Georgetown University library, and study skill development. Individual learning sites can customise the pre-orientation programme to suit the needs of their location and students.

Then, the non-credit, Bridge to Learning course begins on the Blackboard learning management system. Students continue to learn Jesuit higher education as well as developing the basic foundation for the skills they will need throughout the programme. The Bridge to Learning course is immediately followed by the start of the Diploma programme, with Interpersonal Communication being the first 3-credit-hour course that students take.