Higher Education

College applicants still aren’t submitting SAT, ACT scores at pre-pandemic levels

Dive Temporary:

  • Faculty candidates nonetheless aren’t offering SAT or ACT scores on the similar charge they had been earlier than the coronavirus pandemic, according to new data from the Widespread Utility. 
  • Simply 43% of candidates submitted entrance examination scores to Widespread App member establishments for the 2022-23 tutorial 12 months. That is almost the very same share because the earlier 12 months, however far decrease than previous to the pandemic. In 2019-20, almost three-quarters of candidates despatched faculties evaluation outcomes.
  • These tendencies comply with a major variety of faculties switching to test-optional insurance policies, which is mirrored within the Widespread App knowledge. Simply 4% of their member faculties in 2022-23 mandated admission check scores, down from 55% in 2019-20.

Dive Perception:

The test-optional marketing campaign has exploded in greater schooling. As soon as a burgeoning motion, test-optional was pushed into overdrive by the pandemic as widespread examination websites, like Ok-12 faculties, closed.

Some establishments have taken up test-optional admissions quickly, whereas others are adopting test-free insurance policies, refusing to contemplate examination scores in any respect.

General, greater than 1,800 faculties will not be requiring check scores for the autumn 2023 admissions cycle, according to FairTest, an advocacy group pushing for restricted utility of standardized assessments. That rely contains faculties which have traditionally by no means requested for scores.

The information from the Widespread App — an internet portal enabling college students to use to greater than 1,000 collaborating faculties — reveals the assessments’ continued diminished function in admissions, regardless of pandemic restrictions waning.

The share of candidates sending in scores plummeted to 40% within the 2020-21 tutorial 12 months, when stronger COVID-19 precautionary measures had been in impact. To correctly analyze year-over-year comparisons, the Widespread App solely included in its new evaluation the 841 establishments that participated within the 2019-20 tutorial 12 months. 

Solely 35% of scholars from the bottom revenue bracket despatched in scores in 2022-23, roughly the identical share as within the prior two years. In 2019-20, about 67% of lowest-income candidates supplied scores. 

Specialists say the SAT and ACT drawback low-income and different traditionally marginalized candidates probably the most, as they’ll’t afford the identical in depth tutoring as their extra prosperous friends. Certainly, excessive examination scores correlate with wealth.

Practically half of candidates within the highest revenue bracket delivered scores to schools in 2022-23, in line with the Widespread App. Greater than three-quarters of these candidates had been offering scores in 2019-20.

Check submissions additionally diversified by gender — 48% of males despatched scores in 2022-23 versus solely 40% of ladies. Nearly equal shares of women and men — 75% and 73% respectively — furnished scores in 2019-20.

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