To our delight, there has been a trend toward institutions of higher learning going test-blind, test-optional or test-flexible. More than 900 U.S. colleges and universities are making admissions decisions without using, or at least de-emphasizing, ACT and SAT scores. Based on the many hours we spend with a variety of college-bound individuals, we are well aware that test scores frequently do not represent a student's level of achievement or potential for college success.
Many colleges explain that they've switched because the tests are biased against economically disadvantaged students and people of color. Bates College went test-optional in 1984 and has found, through multiple research studies, that students admitted with and without test scores perform equally well in college. High school GPA appears to be a greater predictor of college success.
So, if you're not a great test-taker, is it necessary to take the SAT or ACT?
Yes! And seriously prepare for them. Keep your options open.
How do you decide whether or not to send your scores?
Decide based on the average test scores of a test-optional school's admitted students. If your score meets or exceeds that score, submit.
Indeed. It's not any less work to apply without test scores. Many schools will ask for a graded research paper, additional essays, writing samples, or an interview.