GRADES 5 – 8


Academic Prep

Cornerstone

Cornerstone is an interdisciplinary program of literature and humanities intended for young students

 

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Cornerstone is an interdisciplinary program of literature and humanities intended for students in grades 6 – 9. The program not only builds a solid academic foundation for improvement in the here and now but also expands the potential of its students to perform at an even higher level in the future. Cornerstone has been tailor-made to help students maintain their GPA along with holistically developing skills that will translate into higher standardized test scores. The program consists of 3 levels: 100, 200, 300. Each level builds in students a unique skill set necessary to achieving excellence at every level of schooling. Cornerstone’s aim has and always will be to transform its students into conscious, passionate and capable individuals who can succeed in the classroom and more importantly in life.

Cornerstone 100: Understanding

Cornerstone 100 is the most fundamental level which allows students to develop skills in understanding the general framework of a text through characters and themes. The literature portion of class focuses on testing a student’s general grasp of the language through evidence-based reading, quotation selection and introductory level close reading analysis while humanities gives students a chance to be exposed to U.S. history through primary and secondary source readings.

Cornerstone 200: Critical Thinking

Cornerstone 200 is the program’s intermediate level which allows students to develop inference and critical thinking skills to understand the subtext and deeper meaning of a work. At this level, the literature portion of class moves away from general understanding to close reading analysis, literary terms, citation-based writing and a taste of visual analysis. The humanities section continues student learning in evidence-based reading through longer texts that touch on a variety of subject matter such as science, business and technology.

Cornerstone 300: Synthesis

Cornerstone 300 is the program’s highest level which allows students to develop skills in synthesizing different texts and sources from a variety of disciplines to create a new whole. At this level, literature and humanities work together to bring about a greater understanding of a text and its themes. Students use close reading analysis, visual analysis and evidence-based reading to ultimately create a longer citation-based essay. Subject matter is chosen according to time period and cut across disciplines as varied as political science, philosophy, psychology, science and history.

Cornerstone Math

Cornerstone Math is a program specifically designed to help young students develop a strong base in fundamental mathematics to provide an easier path to advanced mathematics in boarding school, upper level high school math, and standardized tests. The program combines problem set drilling with theory and application, and this delicate balance will prove to be an invaluable skill set for students in the future.

 

Consulting

Boarding School Application (BAP)

BAP is for elementary and middle school students who wish to go abroad to attend prestigious boarding schools

 

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The Boarding School Application Program is for elementary and middle school students who wish to go abroad to attend prestigious boarding schools. Our consultants help the student formulate a school list and guide the student through each required step related to admissions, from standardized test scheduling and preparation, application content, parent statements, and essay completion.

One of the hallmarks of Keystone's Boarding School Application program is our multi-phase interview engagement, where the student will go through Keystone's very own interview intensive to prepare for arguably the most important aspect of boarding school applications. With boarding school acceptances becoming increasingly difficult for all applicants, we believe the interview is where students have an opportunity to distinguish themselves from the rest of the applicant pool. The Boarding School Application Program is highly selective, and we only select a very limited number of students per year. Families are required to interview with our team of consultants to ensure expectations are understood, and the fit is solid between our consultants and the family. In many ways, boarding school applications are more complicated than college applications, and our experienced consultants help demystify the process by navigating through the applications with detailed, hands-on assistance.

All aspects of the application process are handled in-house; students have access to our SSAT test preparation services, and the consultants make sure that the students are well prepared for the exam. The essay is the most time consuming process that requires a lot of brain storming and draft editing, and we are able to apply our knowledge of college application essays to boarding school application essays to help students finalize personal statements that set them apart from the competition.

 

GRADES 8 – 11


Academic Prep

Curricular Enrichment

Maintaining a high GPA in school is imperative to gaining admissions to some of the most prestigious universities abroad

 

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Maintaining a high GPA in school is imperative to gaining admissions to some of the most prestigious universities abroad. However, not all GPA is created equal; universities take into account the rigor of the student's high school curriculum when assessing the value of a student's GPA. Students who wish to gain admissions to top tier universities abroad must strive to receive high grades while undertaking the most challenging courses that they can handle. For example, a 4.0 GPA in an AP level course load is valued higher than a 4.0 GPA in a standard course load. One of Keystone's greatest strengths is helping students get ahead of their academic coursework so that the students are able to successfully tackle their schoolwork head on during their high school years.

Keystone instructors use their expertise in their respective subjects to tutor students of all ages in their school work. We provide customized private 1:1 tutorial services for students who wish to get ahead of their school curriculum in order to increase and maintain their school GPA. This allows students to take on advanced level coursework in high school and perform at their highest level, while also freeing up their time to focus and prepare for standardized tests that are required for university admissions. Our enrichment program is highly customized to the student's needs, level, and schedule, to ensure a cooperative learning environment that maximizes the student's ability to learn.

Many of our enrichment programs are held at the Seoul and Hong Kong offices to provide students with face to face help. Both offices share our network of expansive resources to ensure that students can receive help wherever they are, even if our instructors and students are in different locations. This is accomplished by utilizing online web conferencing software and online teaching tools so our instructors are able to teach any subject to students anywhere around the world. The broad scope of our services is our greatest advantage, and the primary reason why our students consistently outperform their competition.

Enrichment

 

Consulting

Milestone

The Milestone Program is one of Keystone’s customized annual membership-only consulting services

 

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The Milestone Program (grades 8 - 11) is one of Keystone’s customized annual membership-only consulting services, primarily aimed at holistically developing a student’s candidate profile in preparation for the college application process. The key to receiving admissions to top universities is strategically assembling the various attributes of the student’s academic profile into a cohesive package, while showcasing some of the student’s key strengths and competitive edge, differentiating the student from the thousands of global applicants. Many students regrettably go through high school without cultivating their overall profile, resulting in them scrambling around during their 11th grade summer break hoping to squeeze out that last community service activity to fill the gaps in their college applications. Admissions officers see through this poorly thought out, randomized “resume padding” strategy, making it difficult for candidates to gain acceptances to some of the most prestigious universities. Keystone consultants work closely with Milestone students to strategically build their profiles years in advance to develop the student’s application theme, through GPA management, extracurricular activity involvement, standardized test preparation, and mentorship. The Milestone Program fosters the various elements of the student’s profile, and bridges the student into the College Application Program (CAP), where the elements are then pieced together into a final product that becomes the content of the college application to the student’s dream university.

 

GRADES 11 – 12


Academic Prep

Test Preparation

Keystone’s Test Prep service is designed to provide top-notch test prep to function in tandem with the Consulting division

 

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Keystone's Test Prep service is designed to provide top-notch test prep to function in tandem with the Consulting division. We provide instructors whose time-tested curricula have resulted in success for thousands of our students hailing from many different countries through our programs that take place in Seoul, Hong Kong, and New York.

SAT

Our internationally renowned SAT Test Prep service is split into two main units, (1) Core and (2) Intensive, in order to best help students reach their highest possible score effectively and efficiently, on all three sections of the exam: Critical Reading, Math, and Writing (with Essay).

Core: introduces first time Keystone students (and / or students who score below 650 on the Writing and Critical Reading sections) to proprietary Keystone techniques through drill based lectures to perfect fundamentals (students can advance to the Intensive program upon completion of the Core program). Intensive: for students who’ve attended Keystone classes before (and / or students who score above 650 on the Writing and Critical Reading sections), and who need intensive preparation for live tests.

New SAT

Due to loss of market share to ACT and the growing criticism of its current model, College Board announced last year that SAT will go through an overhaul. However, this is aligned with its past practice: every ten years or so, College Board goes through a redesign of its college entrance exam, the current one having been implemented exactly ten years ago. While the public is debating whether the revisions would make the test a better indicator of college performance for high school kids, students and parents are more concerned with a more practical question: is it harder or easier?

The simple answer is, it is both. In certain sections, and for certain groups, the test would be easier. One of the first changes you’d notice about the reading section is that it will no longer test you on obscure words through sentence completion questions. In this regard, students with a less than stellar vocabulary or has problem memorizing 3000+ words, they’d find the test easier to digest. But that also means, they’ve taken away the one portion of the reading section that students could actually study for in a relatively short period of time and see meaningful improvements.

Passage-based questions will also go through revisions, but based on the blueprint released by the College Board, the concepts tested will remain pretty much the same with two notable exceptions: the inclusion of graphical data and incorporation of grammar-based questions into the reading passage. The College Board has announced that the passages themselves will be of different stock, for example, the use of Founding documents, but in all likelihood, the questions would require the same basic critical reading skills.

Essays have definitely become more difficult as it has moved away from its argumentative format to an analytical one. It now requires the students to critically read and analyze a passage, a task that requires a combination of both reading and writing skills of the highest order. While it is denoted as being optional, the essay would in all likelihood be required by most top universities as it is currently the case with the ACT optional essay.

Keystone’s response to the changes has been an in-house development of both short-term and long-term training regimen that focuses on the primary objective of the redesigned SAT, evidence-based reading and writing, and on the fundamental skills common in both the old and the new models.

Subject Tests

Subject Test preparation classes are run in both group and private 1:1 sessions. Keystone has instructors who cover almost all subject tests for both the SAT and AP level.

SAT

Math & Sciences

  • Math Level 1 & 2
  • Biology E/M
  • Chemistry
  • Physics

Humanities & Social Sciences

  • English Literature
  • US History
  • World History

Languages

  • Korean with Listening
  • Chinese with Listening
  • Spanish with Listening

Advanced Placement

Math & Sciences

  • Calculus AB & BC
  • Statistics
  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Physics 1 & 2
  • Physics C: Electricity and Magnetism & Mechanics
  • Environmental Science

Humanities & Social Sciences

  • English Literature and Composition
  • English Language and Composition
  • Art History
  • US History
  • World History
  • European History
  • Government and Politics: Comparative & United States
  • Macroeconomics
  • Microeconomics
  • Psychology

Languages

  • Chinese Language and Culture
  • Spanish Language & Literature

ACT

There has been a steep rise over the last few years in the number of students taking the ACT exam for college entrance. Our instructors prepare students for all sections of the ACT: English, Mathematics, Reading, Science Reasoning, Writing. After assessing the student's level, we build students' skills from the ground up to ensure that the students are able to handle the more difficult questions en route to their highest expected score.

ISEE / SSAT

Students who aspire to attend prestigious private and boarding high schools in the United States are required to take either the ISEE or the SSAT exam (depending on school and region). The ISEE / SSAT test preparation program runs in conjunction with our Boarding School Application program, and our instructors bring years of experience to the classroom to help students advance through our various levels of ISEE / SSAT preparation.

TOEFL

The TOEFL exam is usually required for all international students, and Keystone has designed a specific program for TOEFL preparation based on years of experience preparing students in Seoul for attending school in the United States.

 

Consulting

College Application Program (CAPstone)

The college admissions season is one of the most important moments in students’ lives

 

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The college admissions season is one of the most important moments in students' lives. After all, how they approach this part of their academic journey will have far-reaching effects to their future. But as much as the students are filled with anticipation and excitement, they are often left dazed and confused by the process. While the administrative process itself has become easier with more schools embracing the online Common Application, the qualitative process that takes place behind the gates of the top universities is becoming increasingly convoluted and unpredictable. As a result, more and more students and parents are turning to professional consulting services to guide them through the college admissions process, especially with the competition getting worse with each academic year. Keystone College Application Program (CAP) (grades 11 - 12) has stood at the forefront of and has served as a benchmark for the educational consulting industry in Korea for the past eight years. With the consistently high success rate and incomparable customer satisfaction, CAP has seen its students get into some of the top universities in the world, mainly in the United States. Staffed by experts with extensive experience and knowledge in the matter, CAP program is operated exclusively under limited memberships divided into Elite and Premium members.

Every year, we accept at most five Premium members who are given highly-customized services that include a full range of support and guidance required for a successful application process. In addition, many of the limits on the services for the Elite members do not apply to the Premium members such as the restriction on the number of colleges or different pricing for special programs. Premium package is a flexible program that offers the entire resources of the CAP staff to deal with any issue that may arise during the application process. With the ever more complex and competitive college admissions process, our Premium membership offers the ideal range of services to ensure the best possible result for the student.