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Test Optional for College Admissions

Feb 18, 2021 | Parents, Services, Students

A few days ago, Cornell’s admission offices came out with its standardized testing policy for next year. In short, the school has a two-pronged approach to testing:

  • Three undergraduate schools will be test blind, which means that scores will not be used in admissions.
  • The remaining four will be test-optional, meaning that if you submit testing, it will be considered.

Since March, there have been headaches galore surrounding last-minute test cancellations and students panicking. I applaud Cornell – and all other schools – that have gone the Test-Optional route.

However, the impact of this policy has caused significant spikes in applications. Every Ivy showed double-digit increases in early applications, as did Duke, Tufts, MIT, UVA, and Tulane. However, the number of acceptances did not increase accordingly.

So, what does this mean for college planning for the Class of 2022?

  1. Cast a wider net and think outside the box. Do a thorough job of researching universities that offer courses of study that appeal to you in places that seem appealing.
  2. Attend as many virtual programs as you can. With so many schools offering virtual tours and information sessions, it’s very easy to be an armchair traveler.
  3. Look internationally. Most universities outside of the US charge a fraction of the cost here and they are mostly three-year programs. Many countries, such as the Netherlands, Switzerland, and even little Estonia have courses of study that are fully in English.

Do you want my pick for “schools outside the box?” Feel free to email me at [email protected],  call Sheptin Tutoring Group at 914-232-3743, or check out our website https://sheptin.com/college-planning/