Due to Coronavirus causing schools to go virtual, colleges such as USC, Harvard, and Princeton are not requiring 2021 applicants to submit their SAT and ACT scores. This decision has helped some students feel less anxious while applying to colleges.
The announcement of the SAT and ACT being optional is something not many students expected to hear but were glad they did. “When I first heard about this, I felt a relief because I didn’t like the score I had [received],” Caesar Chacon, a senior, said. Although Chacon was relieved, he still plans on retaking the SAT if the opportunity comes up. He wants to make sure he does everything he can that will strengthen his college application.
There are a lot of advantages that come with colleges not requiring these kinds of tests. “I think it is beneficial for low-income students who don’t have as many resources available to them. I also think that good students who are not so good at testing can benefit from this,” Jimena Morales, a senior, said. Morales believes tests don’t define a student’s capability. She is glad that colleges can now look at other strengths students provide in their applications without focusing on test scores.
Although many students have taken this change as something beneficial, others have not. “I don’t think it’s a great idea that the SAT is optional because, without it, colleges won’t be aware of how much you’d struggle in high school and see that you’re not prepared for the next level,” Johann Carrillo, a senior, said. He believes the SAT is meant to help students see if they are capable of handling the college course rigor, based on the schools they are applying to.
During the pandemic, schools have been trying their best to help out students. As the college application process beginnings, colleges hope students can benefit and feel less stressed with these new changes.