Santa Clara University Offering “Test Optional” Undergraduate Admissions for Two Years

By Robert Haugh

For the next two years, Santa Clara University (SCU) won’t require first-year and transfer students applying for admission to submit standardized tests.

The “test-optional” admissions policy is for the winter 2021 and fall 2021 terms. It’ll be evaluated after that time.

SCU  is doing this to help students facing the challenges associated with the COVID-19 crisis.

Here’s what the University sent out in a press release:

The new policy means scores on standardized tests such as the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) or American College Testing (ACT) are not required for students applying to Santa Clara University for the next two years. Students can submit scores if they choose, but anyone not submitting them will not be penalized or disadvantaged.

These are extraordinary times, and we are hopeful that this step will provide clarity, relief, and stability to those embarking on one of life’s most exciting adventures—their college careers,” said SCU President Kevin O’Brien, S.J.

After the COVID-19 pandemic struck social distancing was put in place. So SAT and ACT testing was canceled around the nation. 

A lot of high school exams were canceled in May and may not take place in the coming months.

And many schools were closed for the rest of the school year, too.

Test scores have always been only a part of the holistic application-review process at SCU. Now is the time to let college-bound seniors know that they are supported and reassure them that their academic success will be fully recognized as they apply to Santa Clara University,” said Eva Blanco Masias, dean of undergraduate admission.

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