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GWA Welcomes Online Admissions Testing

GWA Welcomes Online Admissions Testing

GWA offers an admissions process entirely online - from first inquiry through admissions testing!

GWA Welcomes Online Admissions Testing


This week focuses on one of the challenges posed by GWA’s online operations this spring that has not caught the attention of most people in GWA’s community but yet remains critically important to the success of GWA:  online admissions testing.

To gain admission to GWA, candidates not only submit academic reports and other pertinent documents; they also get assessed by the Early Childhood, Elementary, and Upper School admissions testing teams to provide the Enrollment Management Committee with important data that guide its enrollment decisions.  The quarantine-enforced move into Online School operations in mid-March came at a traditional high point of GWA’s admissions season that typically runs from January through August.  Since then, the fancy banners inviting families to on-campus admissions testing sessions scheduled monthly have gone unseen on the empty campus.  However, that has not stopped GWA’s admissions efforts from continuing the important work of recruiting, assessing, admitting, and enrolling new students for the 2020-2021 school year that starts next fall.

“With the adoption of new admissions software a few years ago, our admissions process has been mostly online for a while,” said Admissions Manager Fatima Zohra El Alaoui.  “But testing was one element we found difficult to move online,” she said.  Relying on the same 21st century skills practiced by teachers, students, and parents during Online School, the admissions staff used creativity, flexibility, and grit to modify testing procedures in ways that allow the Enrollment Management Committee to continue consideration of applications for admission without compromising the ability to make decisions ensuring student quality and alignment with GWA’s Visions Statement.  “We are so excited to be able to continue our admissions work even amid the unique circumstances this spring, and have been pleased with the positive response we have received from the families of applicants doing admissions testing online.  From the youngest applicants for our Nursery program through applicants for high school grades, our process welcomes families to the prospect of joining the GWA community next year even when the campus itself remains closed,” said Mme El Alaoui.

Details of the testing vary somewhat for applicants to Nursery through Kindergarten programs, Elementary grades 1-5, or Upper School grades 6-12 in order to measure well what matters most in their respective assessments.  The general process is the same for all, though, in that admissions staff help guide families through submitting key documents providing important information about their children, then set up testing appointments for student candidates with members of the testing teams to assess language and other important skills, with the interviews recorded to include things of note in applicants’ files.  Following the online tests, the testers share test results with the Enrollment Management Committee, which makes the ultimate decisions on which candidates to offer admission for the upcoming school year.

“Even though our testers will enjoy their summer holidays, testing online allows us to continue testing through the summer by setting virtual meetings with them wherever they may happen to be in the world,” said Mme El Alaoui.  “For so many schools, existing in a purely online setting creates a huge obstacle to moving forward with admissions activity.  But at GWA, online admissions testing is just one more way for us to model 21st century education for our students and families, and for all of Casablanca,” she said.