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US universities to waive SAT, take in students on past scores | India News

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US universities to waive SAT, take in students on past scores | India News 2

MUMBAI: At a time when students planning to go abroad are undecided between whether to take a gap year or study online by paying the full rack rate, America’s finest universities have opened their gates wider. They have turned testblind, not asking for SAT or ACT scores for the class of 2025; not at Harvard, Stanford, MIT or at UPenn, not at Cornell, Princeton, UCLA or Georgia Tech. SAT (scholastic assessment test) scores are usually used by most US universities to evaluate students for undergraduate admission.
Aspirants to almost all American universities will now be considered purely based on their past academic performance in secondary and high school. With SAT exams getting cancelled around the world because of the pandemic, India being no exception to it, the announcement that they will admit students on the “entirety” of their background has come as a huge relief. In May, TOI had reported that several elite institutions including Oxford, Imperial, Insead and some top B-schools such as Wharton, Kellogg and Carnegie Mellon had similarly waived standardised testing requirements.
“Most US universities, including the Ivy League colleges have waived standardised testing requirements for the 2021 intake. This move was done to help students who have faced difficulties in taking the tests due to the pandemic. As a result, we now have more students applying to US universities. Those who were considering taking a gap year are now applying because they don’t need anything additional except their school grades and essays,” said education counsellor Karan Gupta.
At Harvard University, predicted scores by schools or actual results of national exams will be accepted as part of the international candidate’s admission application docket. Harvard University, in its statement, said, “Students who do not submit standardized testing this coming year will not be disadvantaged in the application process. Their applications will be considered on the basis of what they have presented…”
Standardized tests like the SAT were already under the scanner with many American university presidents of the view that test scores were not pivotal predictors of a student’s success. In reviewing applications for 2021, Stanford has said, “If you are not able to take the ACT or SAT, your application will not be at a disadvantage. If you have already taken the ACT or SAT, and you feel that your scores are a positive reflection of your academic preparedness, then you are welcome to self-report them. Your application will not be at a disadvantage if you choose not to report your scores…”

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