Many colleges drop SAT/ACT requirement

Emily Fendall-York
Staff Writer

All seven public universities in Oregon and Oregon Health & Science University no longer require SAT/ACT scores from this year’s graduates for admission starting next year due to the difficulty of taking them and being able to afford them during the pandemic. Also, some colleges are willing to keep it that way because of how unnecessarily stressful they are.

“It kind of sucks that we put in all the work for studying for the SATs, but at least we don’t have to stress about it anymore,” senior Griffin McAbery said.

Oregon State University, Willamette University, Lewis & Clark College, Linfield College, Western Oregon University and the Oregon Institute of Technology are six Oregon colleges reposted by the National Center for Fair & Open testing that had already de-emphasized SAT and ACT scores as a requirement. There are more colleges adding on to this list that have also de-emphasised SATs/ACTs as a requirement.

“I am definitely relieved that SAT’s are no longer required because in my opinion, they could mislead colleges on a students academic knowledge because you are being tested on such a wide variety of academics,” senior Emily Yarnell said. “It looks like the SAT’s are slowly being faded out. I’m personally not going to take them because they’re not required. I think that they will be gone completely in the next few years.”

Some unique programs still require SAT and ACT scores. It is best to look into your field of study that interests you and your selected college to know if it is a different situation for you. Although colleges are not requiring the SAT or ACT, they are still suggesting students to take them. Colleges still would like to have those scores if you can provide them. 

“A lot of colleges are adopting a ‘test option’ admission policy which focuses on high school grades, rigor of coursework, class rank, grades in any college or dual-credit courses, information provided in the student’s personal statement on the application, and the student’s responses to the application essay prompts.  Community colleges usually give their own exams if needed for determining academic placement,” counseling secretary Rhana Mather said.

The varied colleges suggesting SAT/ACT scores means the schools are requiring the tests unless you have a valid reason. Selective schools don’t want to turn students away whose low-income family or responsibilities make it so that college becomes impossible to attend. Admissions officers acknowledge that trying to attend multiple test dates and engage in sustained standardized test prep can place an unnecessary burden on students. 

If the school you are looking into recommends SAT subject tests, they expect to see your scores if your financial need does not prevent you from taking these tests. Not submitting SAT scores to certain colleges could damage your chances of being accepted into many high-end private schools, such as Duke, Princeton, or Yale.

While some colleges still require SAT or ACT scores for this year’s admissions, many colleges such as OSU and U of O do not because of the unreasonable amount of effort it takes to complete these tests due to COVID-19. It is best to look into the college of your interests to see what terms apply to you.

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