Test-optional: Not so fast…

By College Counseling, SAT ACT Test Prep

“Wesleyan was a leader among selective institutions in making standardized testing optional for applicants in 2014. The change allows students more control in how they present themselves to the admission committee and is intended to improve access for underserved communities, students of color, and first-generation scholars who may not have access to standardized test preparation opportunities. Of those admitted to the Class of 2023, 80% made their test scores available, with median scores of 34 ACT Composite, 750 SAT Evidence-Based Reading and Writing, and 780 SAT Math.”

The number of parents and students from Shoreline, CT . who get confused into thinking that test-optional means tests are not considered has prompted me to provide this warning: if you are banking on your grades alone to provide the main quantitative reason to gain admission to test-optional “good schools” then the student better be in the top 5% of the class.

Look at the number above.   As you can likely gather, the students with SATs that high probably have really good grades as well.  And since grade inflation has become so rampant, a reasonable admissions comparison could look as follows:

Student 1:  3.88  GPA (or 98,  if your school has a different system), no SAT scores submitted

Student 2: 3. 81 GPA (or 97) 1530 SAT scores

Which student do you think most admissions officials would prefer?