More than two-thirds of the 2,330 bachelor-degree institutions in the US have shifted to a test-optional admissions policy for fall 2022.
In data released by the National Center for Fair and Open Testing (FairTest), over 1,600 undergraduate schools will not require students to submit ACT/SAT scores to be considered for enrollment. Candidates will be admitted based purely on how they performed during high school.
The COVID-19 pandemic is often referred to as the main reason universities have gone test-blind. The health crisis has canceled SAT exams worldwide, and many students have been afraid to take the test because of the threat of the virus.
According to FairTest executive director Bob Schaeffer, high school seniors should take advantage of the full range of admissions options now that most higher education institutions are not requiring SAT or ACT scores.
He also expressed his belief that the number of colleges shifting to test-optional policies will continue to increase because it is a “win–win” for students and schools.
‘Students Must Shift Focus’
International education counselor Karan Gupta told The Times of India that even academic institutions from other countries recognize that test centers are closed due to the pandemic and that students may not have access to transportation.
He suggested that students focus more on academics and extracurricular activities for a robust application come 2022. However, he said that those who still take the tests and score well should submit their results because it will positively impact their application.
Some colleges going test-optional in 2022 include Abraham Lincoln University, Alabama State University, Augsburg University, Columbia University, and the University of Massachusetts Boston.
“As a university, we recognize that not all students’ abilities are reflected by a standardized test score. In offering a no-test option, we hope to allow qualified academic applicants to highlight their qualifications,” a UMass Boston representative said.