Saint Louis University said that the fall 2021 class is challenged by test date cancellations during the COVID-19 pandemic, making it impractical to require scores
ST. LOUIS — Standardized tests will be optional for the admissions process at Saint Louis University in fall 2021.
The university said it will move to a standardized test optional admission process for all undergraduate and most graduate programs beginning with students applying for admission to the 2021-2022 academic year.
Saint Louis University said that the fall 2021 class is challenged by test date cancellations during the COVID-19 pandemic, making it impractical to require scores.
“Our hope is that this gives prospective students and their families one less worry during this difficult time,” the university said in press release.
For students applying for the fall 2021 semester, the university will not require ACT or SAT scores for freshmen or transfer applicants and will not require the GRE or GMAT for most graduate programs.
However, due to accreditation requirements, a few graduate and professional programs, including law and medicine, will still require pre-admission tests. English proficiency tests will still be required for international students, the university said.
“Though test-optional admissions is spurred by the challenges presented by the pandemic, the University believes it can serve as a catalyst to accelerate our actions in bolstering diversity and increasing access to a SLU education,” the university said in a press release.
A spokesperson for SLU said that while test scores have been requested as part of the application process, those scores have never been the sole factor in admissions decisions.
“Moving to test optional will mean even more holistic admission processes that, in turn, will lead to more diverse applicant pools and more students of color on its campus. This goal, in turn, will strengthen the educational experiences of all SLU students,” the university said.
“Studies show that a prospective student’s high school grade point average is a much better predictor of college success than standardized test scores,” said Kathleen Davis, vice president for enrollment and retention management. “We also know that standardized tests have historically disadvantaged those students with lower family incomes and less access to expensive test preparations services.”
“As we move to a test optional admissions process that should broaden access to groups of historically underrepresented and disadvantaged students, it helps us as an institution to live out our stated mission of pursuing truth in service to humanity,” said Jonathan Smith, Ph.D., vice president for diversity and community engagement.