Most Four-Year Schools Drop Admission Tests

A recent FairTest tally finds that more than 1,600 four-year schools will not require students to submit ACT/SAT scores to be considered for fall 2022 enrollment. Therefore, more than two-thirds of the 2,330 bachelor-degree institutions in the U.S. should have in place admissions policies which are generally regarded as more inclusive to minority students, including multilingual learners.

The list of ACT/SAT-optional and test-blind schools (https://fairtest.org/university/optional) is made available by the National Center for Fair and Open Testing (FairTest). The organization has been at the forefront of the U.S. test-optional admissions movement since the late 1980s.

“The coming year’s high school seniors should take advantage of the full range of admissions options,” explained FairTest executive director Bob Schaeffer. “Nearly all the most competitive liberal arts colleges in the country will not require ACT/SAT scores from applicants for fall 2022 seats. Similar policies will also be in place at a majority of public university campuses.”

“Study after study—the most recent from the University of California—has shown that eliminating admissions test requirements enhances undergraduate diversity without reducing academic quality,” Schaeffer concluded. “FairTest expects the number of test-optional institutions to continue growing because the policy is a ‘win– win’ for both students and schools.” The UC system announced in July that for fall 2021, without using SAT or ACT scores in admissions, “students from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups comprise 43% of admitted California freshmen, the highest proportion of an incoming undergraduate class and the greatest number in UC history at 36,462.” The major exceptions to the strong test-optional trend, according to FairTest, are public college systems in Deep South states such as Georgia and Florida, U.S. service academies, and some small religious colleges.

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