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Colleges That Don’t Require The SAT

Some highly ranked SAT optional schools include Bates, Bowdoin,Bryn Mawr, Hofstra, Pitzer, Sarah Lawrence, Smith, University of Iowa, University of Texas at Austin, Wake Forest, Washington University, and Wesleyan. Scroll down to see the full list of colleges that do not require SAT scores.


Rebecca Safier in the beginning of 2015 writes about these practices in the following blog.


Some schools may waive the test requirement if you meet a minimum GPA or are applying to a specific program. Other schools will allow you to send AP test scores or SAT Subject Test scores in lieu of the general SAT. Their rationale is that these scores may demonstrate subject mastery and thus reveal your own particular academic interests and motivations.

NYU’s test flexible policy, for example, states the following:

“To be eligible for admission, applicants are expected to submit results from one of the following testing options:

The SAT Reasoning Test; or

The ACT with Writing Test; or

Three SAT Subject Test scores; or

Three AP exam scores.”


Don’t be afraid to send an email to the school asking for specifics about the test!

Since the specifics of test flexible policies may vary from school to school, you should check with your colleges of interest to make sure you are fulfilling the application requirements. This information should be available on each school’s admission website, but if it’s not, definitely call up an admissions officer and speak to them directly. You’ll not only get the information you need, but you will also be demonstrating interest and a proactive approach to the college, which could help you stand out among all the other applicants.


Some highly ranked test flexible schools include Colby College, Colorado College, Hamilton College, Middlebury College, and NYU. Check out the full list below.


Some higher-ranked liberal arts schools are more often listed as test-optional, compared to National universities. Liberal arts schools have increasingly taken the position that your test scores are only one component of your application and don’t represent the sum of your entire education.


However, most prestigious universities (the top 50 national universities) still require the SAT. This requires Ivy League schools like Harvard, Yale, and Princeton; University of California system schools like Berkeley and UCLA; and many other top private schools.


It’s important to know the SAT policies of schools long before you actually apply, since taking and prepping for the SAT can begin over a year in advance of your deadlines. Now that you’re aware of these different policies, your first course of action is to start exploring.

September 17, 2015

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