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BYUH admissions shares the new English proficiency tests for potential students

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Photo by Nguyen Dang Hoang Nhu from Unsplash.

The BYU–Hawaii admissions and the EIL department developed the English Language Admission Test (ELAT), a series of English proficiency tests for international students, according to Maurice Mo’o, the manager of BYUH’s Admissions and a local from Laie.

Mo’o said, “What we decided to do as a team was to streamline the process where international students will no longer take another placement exam after they get admitted to BYUH. This means the EIL placement test that requires international students to take is basically the ELAT.” He said this placement test they had before was changed into an admission test.

According to, ELAT consists of reading, listening, writing and speaking tests which all require minimum scores from each English language skill area in order to advance to the whole test. The updated scores were:

Reading (60 minutes) - score of 10 or more

Writing (50 minutes)- score of 3.5 or more

Listening (35 minutes)- score of 13 or more

Speaking (35 minutes)- score of 6.5 or more

The registration for ELAT can be found at “Upon registering, you will then receive several instructions through email from the EIL department to utilize the exam through Canvas,” Mo’o said. After registering through Canvas, applicants will see the practice placement tests and the actual test itself along with their deadlines, minimum scores and duration, added Mo’o.

Among these changes, further clarifies updated information about the test for potential students and their parents. According to the website, says, “Beginning with the Winter 2024 application, BYU–Hawaii will no longer accept the Michigan, SLEP, EIKEN and PTE test scores.” While eliminating these third-party English proficiency tests, the school still retains the results from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) and the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). Minimum scores and information for these English proficiency tests can be found on the same website.

“This English test can only be taken once per application period. If you fail on your first try, you are encouraged to take other English tests such as the TOEFL or IELTS or to move your application to the next semester where you can take the ELAT again,” Mo’o said. He added unlike previous English tests, one's ELAT scores will only be valid for a year.

In line with the update, the school also encourages international students to take BYU–Pathway Worldwide EnglishConnect 3 as part of their preparation. Although it is connected to the school’s administration, according to the website, it is not an approved English proficiency test to be admissible at BYUH. Additionally, the website states completing this program will prepare them to take the ELAT.

According to Mo’o, “In the recent ELAT, around 400 potential students worldwide took the test. Among each nation, the top five countries who took the tests were the Philippines, Tonga, Papua New Guinea, Fiji and tied at fifth were French Polynesia and Indonesia.” He said among the 400 who took the test, around 50 percent of them passed the exam.

Jeshr Isaiah Duque, an applicant from the Philippines, said, “The ELAT was the most convenient English test I have ever taken. In terms of accessibility, the test was provided through Canvas, which was very easy to navigate around.” He said the instructions were simple to understand but specific to what it wanted to accomplish.

“My preparations were the study guides I reviewed from other English proficiency tests. Studying them helped me understand how the English language is used in an educational context,” Duque added.

T. James Faustino, the dean of students and a Hauula resident, said, “For the past 12 years that I have been the director of Admissions, it has been a strong desire of ours to replace the preexisting placement tests.” Along the way of discovering a different method, Faustino said, there were countless times when they were faced with opposition up until the alignment of BYU–Pathway Worldwide with BYUH.

Moreover, Faustino said, “Everything is on our website. [The] basic information about the updates, deadlines and more are found there.” He said his suggestions and plea to potential students is to pay attention to the opportunity to register and to take the test when they feel they are most ready to take it.