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SAT/ACT test scores now optional for UW-Madison applicants this year

UW-Madison will not require SAT / ACT standardized tests from prospective students this year, citing COVID-19 concerns.
(NBC15)
Published: Jul. 29, 2020 at 3:21 PM CDT
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - UW-Madison will not require SAT / ACT standardized tests from prospective students this year, citing COVID-19 concerns.

The College Board, which administers the SAT, in June called universities to show students flexibility when it comes to standardized tests requirements. The Board argued that millions of students were unable to take the tests due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Due to that reason, the UW-Madison decided on Wednesday to issue a waiver of System admissions policy, which makes submitting SAT or ACT test scores optional. University officials will now go before the College Board in August to seek a long-term waiver for the tests.

"This is a necessary decision to ensure that our admissions process remains equitable, and to reduce some of the anxiety we know prospective applicants are feeling during this difficult time by moving to a test-optional approach this fall," said Derek Kindle, vice provost for enrollment management.

In a news release, the university insists that students who do not submit SAT or ACT tests will not be disadvantaged in the admissions process.

For those who do submit the tests, admissions officers will look at "all the other factors that traditionally have been part of the evaluation," according to the release.

“We are confident we can maintain our high admissions standards while implementing this approach,” says Chancellor Rebecca Blank. “Nothing changes in our overall goal - to enroll a diverse freshman class of talented, intellectually curious, community-minded students who are excited about learning and ready to do great things in the world.”

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