The folks at Duolingo are “working with partners including UNHCR and Ukraine Global Scholars to expand its Access Program and provide fee waivers so Ukrainian students can take an English proficiency test required for their university applications.”

This is the sort of thing I’ve lobbied my contacts in Big Test to provide in times of crisis – most recently when the government in Afghanistan fell. I’ve come close to convincing them to implement such a program, but have always hit a bureaucratic brick wall in the end. I’m glad to see that Duolingo appears more open to the possibility than other testing firms.

When a single step in the process of becoming an international student is missed (say, a standardized test) sometimes the whole process must be repeated from the beginning. That can take a whole year, or more. Testing organizations must be more nimble and step up to provide more support when needed.

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