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Are SATs Required For College – Complete Guide

Jan 24, 2023

Are SATs required for college? If you are among those candidates who do not wish to sit for the SAT exam but directly get admission to US colleges, it’s good news! The covid-19 pandemic wave has caused many US colleges board to drop the idea of considering SAT scores for admissions. After knowing this, we are sure you might have some questions in mind!

Are sats required for college you want to get admission to? Which are the test-optional colleges in 2022? Keep reading to get your answers!


What are Test-Optional Colleges?

A test-optional college typically follows the test-optional policy. This policy lets you choose whether or not to submit your SAT results to colleges and universities. These colleges do not require you to send your SAT scores. Instead, you must check if your exam results reflect your academic skill and potential.

This policy allows you to design your candidacy to a test-optional college like you can with the rest of your application. However, it also provides greater flexibility and control over displaying your qualifications to admission authorities.


Are SATs Required for College in the US?

As the coronavirus spreads across the country, test-optional colleges are increasing in number. As a result, several colleges have also adopted admissions procedures that allow students to join without taking these exams. SAT is conducted to assess a high school student’s eligibility and readiness to get admission into a college. It also offers colleges a single standardized evaluation criterion to compare all the prospective candidates.

Are Colleges Requiring SAT for the Class of 2024? What Do the Stats Say?

According to the National Center for Fair & Open Testing notification, more than 1,240 of the 2,330 colleges in America have confirmed they would not need candidates to submit SAT scores. These colleges are the ones that grant bachelor’s degrees. Most of these colleges will now accept essays, portfolios, and other displays of intellect in place of SAT scores. It is a great relief for applicants with low SAT scores.


Many colleges have changed their admission policies after the coronavirus epidemic. This was done to solve the increased difficulty of taking the SAT securely. Test optional policies are becoming more common in admissions. It allows applicants to determine whether their test results represent their academic abilities correctly.

On the other hand, many of these institutions only enable flexibility for candidates applying to certain programs or college majors. Candidates will still need to demonstrate their academic talents in other ways. But, a college with a liberal admissions policy may be the way to go for students with low SAT results.


Other Factors which Play a Determining Role in Your Admission Process:

1. Statement of Purpose (SOP):

Apart from an SAT score, a Statement of Purpose can be an important determining factor in deciding your application for admission. Even if your GPA is poor, a strong SOP might help you get into your preferred institution. An SOP explains why you want to attend that college and course, why you are qualified, and your interests and strengths.

2. Letter of Recommendation (LOR):

Letters of recommendation from your high school instructors, seniors, or internships (if any) will help your application stand out from the crowd.


3. Essay Prompts:

This is another feature that may help you stand out from the crowd. It’s a means for a college to assess a student’s experimental thinking and ability. This is where you may express the core of ‘You,’ things that other application sections do not address.

4. Internships and Extra-Curricular:

Extracurricular activities might help you gain bonus points. It adds worth to your application, especially if you do not submit your SAT scores. Of course, the cherry on top is being a part of a few solid projects or having some experience in the subject you are applying to.


Which are the Colleges Not Requiring SAT Scores for 2024?

Some top-ranked test-optional colleges will provide educational opportunities without requiring them to take a major exam. Since 2020, approximately 200 schools and institutions have been added to the list. Here is a quick list (in tabular format) of some of the test-optional colleges:

Anderson CollegeIllinois State University
Bates CollegeMacalester College
Beloit CollegeNeumann University
Bowdoin CollegeOhio University
Bryn Mawr CollegePitzer College
Chapman UniversityRochester Institute of Technology (NY)
Dartmouth CollegeSeattle University
Eastern Washington UniversityUniversity of Chicago
Hofstra UniversityWake Forest University
Husson UniversityWooster College

Some Colleges that will remain Test-optional beyond the 2024 Academic School Year:

American University (DC)Saint Lawrence University
Bennington CollegeTrinity College
Cornell CollegeUniversity of Chicago
Dickinson CollegeWake Forest University
The George Washington UniversityWesleyan University

If you wish to check a complete list of Test-optional colleges in 2024, visit this website:


Did you know about these Test-flexible Colleges?

A test-flexible policy requires you to submit different credentials in place of the SAT scores. This means that it enables you to have other options than sending an SAT score compulsorily. Some institutions, for example, may eliminate test scores if you have a certain GPA or are applying to a certain program. Others may accept AP or IB results instead of SAT scores. It is because these scores might indicate your academic interests and goals by demonstrating command and competence over the subject.

As test-flexible rules differ from college to college, you should double-check with your institutions of interest. This helps to ensure that you meet all of the application criteria. If this information isn’t available on each school’s website, try calling the college’s admission office. The following are some highly ranked test-flexible schools:

Colby College

Middlebury College

New York University

Brandeis University

Hamilton College

Colorado College

What is Test Blind Colleges?

Only a few universities now have test-blind policies in place. This policy implies that you won’t send any test scores to these schools. Some institutions actively reject submitted scores and test results. They do not consider these scores in their decision-making for admissions.

Test scores aren’t everything! Fortunately for aspiring students, more colleges adopt a more liberal admissions policy. However, it does not replace hard effort and a studious attitude to education. Rather, it removes some of the constraints that many students confront in pursuing higher education.

For example, Hampshire College in Amherst, MA, comes under this category as it does not consider any test scores for taking admissions. Some other colleges include:
● Catholic University of America
● Northern Illinois University
● Northern Michigan University
● The University of California system of schools.

What is the Way Ahead After Reading this Test-Optional College List?

Now you know which colleges are requiring SAT for the Class of 2024. It is also clear how much these scores in your application are treated differently by various colleges. So the next step is to follow these tips:

Do a Fact-Checking:

Admissions processes are complicated and unique to each college. It is up to you to properly research all of the institutions you are considering for admissions. If you can’t find a clear explanation of the admission policy on the college’s website, directly give a phone call to the admission office and inquire personally.

Taking the SAT Exam isn’t that Bad:

Do not rule out the SAT too soon; you’ll want to leave your choices open. On the other hand, taking the exam and keeping a score ready isn’t bad at all. Before it gets too late to prepare for it successfully and not be able to satisfy the college’s admission standards, go for it! Early junior year is considered the best time to start planning and preparing for the exam.

Keep your Options Open:

Limiting oneself to a few colleges only to avoid taking the SAT isn’t a good idea. Make sure you apply to as many colleges as possible. If you want to bypass the SAT, do not limit yourself to a small number of colleges. Remember that knowledge and intellect never go to waste!

Analyze your Application:

If you analyze your application, it will help you reflect on your strengths and flaws. Whether you apply to test-optional colleges that do not require the SAT or the ones that provide test-flexible choices. Check on questions such as:

❖ Have you got a good SAT score, or will you be able to get one?
❖ Do AP tests and IB exams better represent your academic aptitude?
❖ Will your application be strengthened by these test results, or do they not accurately reflect your talents and abilities?
❖ Which areas or subjects reflect your strengths?

While many colleges have dropped the policy of considering SAT scores, do not skip neglecting them altogether. Most top colleges, including Ivy League schools like Harvard and Yale, still demand SAT scores. To make the admissions process easier for you, make sure you are familiar with the policies of the institution you apply to before sending in your application.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is the SAT?

The SAT is a standardized test to measure a student’s skills in three core areas: Reading, Math, and Writing. Students in grades 11 and 12 take the SAT to submit their scores to colleges as part of the college application process.

2. When is the SAT?

Anticipated US test dates this year are August 27, 2024, October 1, 2024, November 5, 2024, December 3, 2024

3. Can you go to college without taking the SAT?

Yes, students can enter college without taking the SAT exam. Some schools prefer the ACT. But the other schools do not require either test.

4. Is SAT score mandatory for college?

Many leading colleges have become test-optional. This policy gives the freedom to choose whether to submit the score or not. Till 2024, the same admission policy will prevail.

5. Do all colleges require SAT or ACT?

While most colleges in the US require SAT scores for admission, some institutions do not need it at the time of application.

6. Do Ivy Leagues require SAT?

All will continue to follow the test-optional policy for the 2024-2025 application cycle so far as SAT is concerned.

7. Is SAT optional?

The test-optional policy was introduced after the pandemic situation. Top-ranking schools also made it optional to submit SAT scores.

8. Will SAT be required for the class of 2024?

Most of the colleges will be test-optional for 2024 as well.

Are SATS required for college


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