General Requirements

The criteria outlined below are determined by the Higher Education Council of Turkey.

Students who are at senior year at high school or who graduated from high school and who satisfy at least one of the below criteria may apply as international students.

– Students with foreign nationality,

– Students who were Turkish citizens by birth but ceased to be a citizen by the courtesy of the Ministry of Interior (applicant has to certify that he/she holds the official document regarding the use of rights granted by Turksih Citizenship Law),

– Students who were registered as minors on the document stating that the parent has ceased to be a Turkish citizen as explained above (applicant has to certify that he/she holds the official document regarding the use of rights granted by Turksih Citizenship Law),

– Foreign nationals who have taken Turkish citizenship / dual citizens within this context,

– Turkish citizens who began high school before 1 Feb 2013 abroad and who completed the last 3 years of high school education abroad (except in Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus – TRNC),

– Turkish citizens who began high school after 1 Feb 2013 abroad and who completed the entire high school education abroad (except in TRNC),

– Turkish citizens who completed the entire high school education abroad (except in TRNC) in one of the Turkish schools recognized by the Ministry of Education,

– TRNC citizens who reside in TRNC and who completed their high school education in TRNC and who have taken the GCE AL exam,

– TRNC citizens who enrolled in high schools abroad (except in Turkey and in TRNC) between 2005-2010 and who have taken/will take the GCE AL exam.

Students who cannot apply as international students:

– Turkish citizens who have completed their entire high school education in Turkey or in TRNC,

– TRNC citizens (except cases explained above),

– Dual nationality applicants whose first nationality is Turkish by birth (except cases explained above),

– Applicants who hold dual nationality one of which is TRNC (except cases explained above),

– Turkish citizens or dual-nationality students whose first nationality is Turkish by birth who studied in foreign schools in Turkey or in schools within the context of embassies in Turkey.

Undergraduate Programs offered and English Preparatory Year admission

International students can apply directly to undergraduate programs offered at Koç University ORbe admitted into our English Language Center (ELC) preparatory year.

Since English is the language of instruction at Koç University, it is essential that you demonstrate competence in the language:

– Students who submit a valid English Proficiency Exam Result will be exempted from English Language Center and will directly begin their undergraduate courses. Please note below the minimum scores required:

o   TOEFL: IBT 80 WRT 20 / CBT 213 / PBT: 550   TWE: 4

o   IELTS: 6,5 and minimum score of 5 per section

o   YDS: 87 (Yabancı Dil Sınavı – mostly for Turkish applicants)

– Students who don’t satisfy the minimum English proficiency required (as detailed above) but are deemed academically fit may be offered admission into our ELC 1 year program.

Please note:  it is not sufficient to have proficiency in English. International students are also required to satisy the minimum acceptable scores or diploma grades in the exams or diplomas listed in Acceptable Exams and Diplomas and Minimum Eligibility Scores and Grades section

Our Departments are;

Philosophy & Structure of the Koç University Curriculum

Koç University recognizes that the education of each student is a distinct process and suggests that the university adopt a liberal education philosophy. According to the definition of the Association for American Colleges and Universities, a liberal education “is an approach to learning that empowers individuals and prepares them to deal with complexity, diversity, and change. It provides students with broad knowledge of the wider world (e.g. science, culture, and society) as well as in-depth study in a specific area of interest (1).”  Liberal education, thus, helps students investigate the world from different perspectives.

The curriculum at Koç University has three components: Core courses, concentration courses, and free electives. While concentration courses provide the disciplinary depth, free electives offer students an opportunity to customize their programs according to special needs, talents, interests, and plans. Although their numbers change from department to department, free electives constitute a significant portion of the curriculum and are essential to our educational philosophy. They may be utilized to specialize on a specific subject area or to provide a disciplinary breadth.

Core Program at Koç University

We implement liberal education through the core program at Koç University. Core courses provide the middle ground between our electives and the required courses: They are not as structured as required courses to accommodate diverse student interests; yet, they provide guidance and a common ground for all students by offering a structured exposure to disciplines and major competencies.

Goals of the Core Curriculum at Koç University

To appreciate the ultimate unity of human knowledge

To foster interdisciplinary collaboration

To foster critical and analytical thinking

To inspire collaboration across different fields

To engage in free inquiry and intellectual exploration without the limitations of vocational concerns

To serve as a bridge between university and society

To appreciate the artistic and cultural heritage of Turkey and the world

To ease and encourage collaboration with individuals from diverse backgrounds

To become effective leaders and communicators

Areas of Knowledge

The Core Program consists of 7 knowledge areas indispensable to our liberal arts philosophy:

Humanities (HUMS)

The study of ‘Humanities’ covers a broad range of academic disciplines and topics that examine human experience and culture from a critical and historical perspective. Areas of study typically include, but are not limited to, history, philosophy, law, arts, literature, ethics, and linguistic and cultural studies. Courses offered under this category of the core program examine contemporary and historical texts that represent human efforts to understand the world in diverse ways through ideas, values, cultures, heritages, and ethical ideals. While covering a range of topics in past and contemporary societies, humanities emphasize to think and read critically, engage with texts creatively, and write and speak clearly and expressively. Humanities help students build an intellectual foundation for free inquiry, understand the factors shaping the thought, culture, belief, and society and recognize the interplay between them in an informed and critical way.

Social Sciences (SOSC)

The study of ‘Social Sciences’ include courses from a variety of fields such as sociology, anthropology, archaeology and international studies, where human behavior and the functions and interactions of social structures are studied. This area aims to expose students to basic theories in the social sciences, methods of analysis, critical assessment and interpretation as well as building linkages between complex social phenomena. Potential subject matters in courses include, but are not limited to, understanding of human behavior, organization of social structures, interaction of the individual and the society, international organizations, and interaction of the societies in relation to the contemporary world. These topics would enable students to understand, evaluate and respond rationally to the personal or public issues facing them on a daily basis.

Aesthetic and Interpretive Understanding (ASIU)

Courses offered under this category will familiarize students with the cultural fabric of Turkey and the world, introduce students to a number of artistic and literary traditions, and help them understand and appreciate the thoughts, feelings, and beliefs expressed in a variety of artistic and literary fields in an informed and critical way. It is essential for these courses to expose students to critical assessment, aesthetic criteria, and to develop ability for interpretive understanding; express the significance of different artistic and literary forms as a reflection of human intellect, heart, and soul; and emphasize the meaning and value of appreciating diverse approaches. These courses should encourage creativity and offer hands-on experience or field studies as well. They aim to enrich the artistic and literary appreciation of our students.

Economic and Strategic Analysis (ECSA)

‘Economics and Strategic Analysis’ area includes courses that focus on the interaction among individuals in the marketplace and in the political arena, which involves the strategic decision making as the major driving force. Potential subject matters in these courses include, but are not limited to, the fundamental economic principles and concepts, political concepts and ideas, game theoretic analysis of individual and institutional interactions, analysis of different economic and political systems throughout the history. These courses aim to familiarize students with the issues and factors shaping the domestic and global economic, business and political relations, and how these reflect the character, choices, morals, and the philosophy of the individuals as well as nations.

Ethical Reasoning (ETHR)

‘Ethical Reasoning’ core courses aim to contribute in molding individuals who are equipped with the ability to identify, evaluate and develop ethical arguments from various ethical positions by providing them the opportunity to investigate competing ethical conceptions from both theoretical and practical perspectives. Ethical principles and concepts such as justice, rights fairness, equality, freedom and happiness are considered. The focus is on fueling and furthering the participants’ drive and ability to critically determine and value the reasons for or against applying those principles with tangible results in the form of informed decisions under an ethical framework when faced with concrete ethical dilemmas. The ultimate goal of ‘Ethical Reasoning’ courses is to help the participants reach a level where they can personally reason on social, political or moral beliefs by challenging and testing their dogmatic constructions as well as their perceived worldview and put forth their own claims for consideration on such beliefs and the issues derived therefrom.

Empirical and Quantitative Reasoning (EQUR)

Courses under ‘Empirical and Quantitative Reasoning’ core area emphasize mathematical tools that are helpful in decision-making problems, and present students how to apply concepts and theory to concrete problem solving and decision-making situations. The tools that fall under this core area are interpreted broadly and include logic, probability and statistics, discrete mathematics, decision theory and algorithms. The emphasis on applying concepts and theory to real-world problem solving is essential for this core area. Real world decision-making necessitates gathering, organizing and understanding data, basic quantitative modeling skills and using tools in a structured manner to analyze problems and interpret results.  All courses offered under the Empirical and Quantitative Reasoning core area provide analytical reasoning and deduction of conclusions from data.

Natural Sciences (SCIE)

Advancements in the science and technology affect the lives of individuals and the societies dramatically. Today the world is a highly technological and innovative place and there is an inevitable interplay between science and technology and the evolution of societies, economic and political issues, philosophy and ethics. Courses offered under this category aim to equip individuals with the basic information and scientific approach to understand the world they live in and evaluate the scientific and technological products of today and future.  Science courses aim to familiarize students with the basic principles of the physical universe and the living systems and demonstrate scientific methodology, analysis and research.  Students will practice critical, analytical, empirical, and scientific thinking and reasoning which will be instrumental for the rest of their lives. How claims are investigated, how hypotheses are constructed and tested, how cause-and-effect relationships can be built and facts can be deduced will be demonstrated to students.

The 8 Competencies of the Core Program

Competency 1: Demonstrate written and oral communication skills

•    Understand and communicate effectively with others in a variety of contexts and using a variety of   formats, including writing, speaking, reading, listening and interpersonal skills.

•    Organize thoughts and communicate them to others effectively.

•    Value the ideas of others and make significant contributions to them.

Competency 2: Demonstrate the ability to think critically

•    Be self-motivated in seeking information.

•    Interpret, analyze, and evaluate verbal or quantitative evidence.

•    Draw conclusions based on information.

•    Apply scientific mindfulness (skepticism) when receiving information.

•    Construct well-supported, clearly articulated, and sustained arguments.

•    Question previously acquired knowledge.

Competency 3: Demonstrate analytical reasoning skills

•    Use analytical techniques to solve every day quantitative problems.

•    Identify the type of data needed to solve problems.

•    Understand cause-effect relationships, and the methods that confirm their existence.

Competency 4: Integrate knowledge

•    Understand appropriate uses of a variety of methods of inquiry.

•    Articulate how the knowledge learned in general education is relevant to the college career and beyond.

•    Relate newly acquired specific knowledge to knowledge acquired elsewhere.

•    Evaluate own strengths and weaknesses as a learner and become a self-regulated learner.

•    Develop an agenda for intellectual growth.

Competency 5: Demonstrate ethical reasoning skills

•    Remember the value of human rights in everyday life.

•    Interact with others based on an understanding of the fallacies of self-justification, self-deception, unfair practices, and violating the rights of the others.

•    Discuss, from multiple points of view, ethical issues and dilemmas such as fairness, obligations, personal integrity, justice, welfare of the others, and liberty.

•    Distinguish the ethical from the non-ethical, and the ethical from pseudo-ethical.

Competency 6: Demonstrate creativity

•    Generate new and innovative ideas.

•    Design new methods and solutions to existing problems/situations.

•    Demonstrate the ability to express feelings, beliefs, and thoughts in a variety of artistic forms.

Competency 7: Demonstrate free inquiry

•    Be motivated to seek information.

•    Demonstrate flexibility in the use of sources and/or methods to access information.

•    Interpret information in new ways in collaboration with peers, or through interaction with a text.

Competency 8: Develop empirical reasoning abilities

•    Interpret quantitative or symbolic information such as graphs, tables, units of measurement, scales, and distributions. Use the experimental method appropriately.

•    Generate, collect, and interpret data.

•    Demostrate ability to test a hypothesis and justify an idea using scientific methods.