Test Optional Admissions

Given the cancellations of the ACT and SAT tests this spring 2020, several colleges, including the University of California, will have a test-optional policy for applicants starting next Fall 2020, meaning applicants are not required to submit SAT and ACT scores for admissions. However, the test optional policies vary per school, ranging from suspending the submission of SAT/ACT scores for only one application seaon, to the next three years to permanently.

In recently changing the SAT/ACT requirement, college admissions officers want to maintain the greatest access to admissions for the widest, most qualified pool of applicants, including those affected by the COVID-19 health emergency, while accounting for the cancelation of the SAT and ACT this spring 2020.

Some colleges, like Oregon State University (OSU), University of Oregon (UO) and Scripps College, are no longer requiring any applicants to submit SAT or ACT test scores starting in Fall 2021 and onward. OSU, UO and Scripps College add their names to a growing list of other universities where test-optional policies were in place even before the health crisis of COVID-19.

Other college admissions officers, like those at Tufts University, Davidson College in North Carolina and Trinity University in Texas, will suspend SAT and ACT score requirements for all current high school students in the Classes of 2021-2023, applying to college in the next three years. Thus, any high school students whose academics may also be affected by the disruption of schools being closed and adjusting to online learning, will be exempt from submitting SAT or ACT scores, as well.

Lastly, some colleges, like the University of California, Case Western Reserve University, Pomona College, Vassar College, and Boston University, are suspending the SAT and ACT score requirements for only Fall 2020 applicants, meaning only current Class of 2021 high school juniors are affected by the policy changes. 

Applicants for Fall 2021 will face the question of whether to submit SAT or ACT scores or not, so should consult with trusted advisors in debating their choice. Those same trusted advisors can also help students determine whether or not to take the SAT or ACT at all, since not every college in the U.S. is implementing a test-optional policy.

If you have questions about how you may benefit from the test-optional policy in seeking college admissions, please contact Creative Marbles advisors at (916) 769-6092 or info@creativemarbles.com to schedule a consultation.

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About Jill Yoshikawa, Ed M, Partner of Creative Marbles Consultancy

Jill Yoshikawa, EdM, Harvard ’99, a seasoned, 25 year educator and consultant, is meticulous in helping clients navigate all aspects of the educational experience, no matter the level of complexity. She combines educational theory with experience to advise families, schools and educators. A UCSD and Harvard graduate, as well as a former high school teacher, Jill works tirelessly to help her clients succeed.
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