SAT / ACT "Optional" Colleges


SAT meme

(My test optional meme. Same meme applies for the ACT, GRE, or any standardized test.)


NEW: interview with Sal Khan, founder of the gold standard in free online education - Khan Academy - about the harm caused by test-optional. No one has done more recently than Khan to fight educational inequality - so I think his words carry some major weight.


If there's one message I want to get out there about "test-optional", it's this:


No test score = a missed opportunity to stand out from the crowd.


1. If you can get a good score, you're gonna look a. smarter and b. more hard-working than the applicant next to you without a score.

2. Test-optional schools are reporting record-breaking numbers of applicants - there is more competition than ever at the brand name schools.

3. Competitive schools that are honest enough to share this kind of data are making it clear that they accept a much higher percentage of applicants who submit scores than of those who do not.

4. You'll now have many more opportunities for scholarships and merit aid.

Of course, you might prepare for the test and NOT get a good score. That might cost you time and money. And, if you don't really care where you end up, or if you are particularly terrible at tests like this, test-optional might be a blessing for you. But if you want to give yourself every possible advantage, test prep is common sense - whether you work with us or not.

In the below video, Vince goes over more thoughts about test-optional programs.

Update: Here's a recent Wall St. Journal article describing how increasing numbers of students are opting to take the SAT / ACT, even when they're not required.

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