Scholarship News

Test-Optional Policies Drive Increase in College Applications


February 23, 2021 2:33 PM
by Izzy Hall
Well-known and selective colleges such as the University of Virginia, Harvard and the University of California at Berkeley are seeing a spike in college applications due to their adoption of test-optional admissions for the 2021 admissions cycle. These record increases have led some schools to announce an extension of test-optional admissions into future years.

Well-known and selective colleges such as the University of Virginia, Harvard and the University of California at Berkeley are seeing a spike in college applications due to their adoption of test-optional admissions for the 2021 admissions cycle. These record increases have led some schools to announce an extension of test-optional admissions into future years.

ADVERTISEMENT

Initially instituted in response to the difficulty of taking an SAT or ACT exam during the pandemic, test-optional admissions aim at lowering a barrier to entry into top schools by not requiring standardized test scores. Students who may have otherwise not applied to selective, big name schools because they didn’t meet the minimum SAT and ACT requirements are taking advantage of the opportunity to let their high school courses and grades speak for themselves. And without the pressure to study for and sit through standardized tests, students can stay focused on their schoolwork and getting the best grades possible.

Numbers show that this test-optional admission experiment has been successful for many high-profile schools. The University of Virginia had about a 15% increase in admissions over last year, Cornell University received around a third more applications this year, and Harvard had its largest year ever, with a 42% increase in applications.

In response, schools are extending their experimental test-optional policies into future application cycles. Liberal arts schools such as Williams and Amherst have extended their test-optional admissions for two more years, while Ivy League schools like Harvard, Columbia and Cornell will continue accepting test-optional applications through 2022. Schools in the University of California system like UC-Berkeley have transitioned to completely test-blind admissions for in-state students, with the hope of creating a California-specific standardized test in the next five years.

How have test-optional admissions impacted your college applications? Do you feel that test-optional admissions improve your chances of being accepted? As always, let us know in the comments below.

College is expensive. Scholarships.com has done the work for you. Pay for your college education with free college scholarship money. Get matched to college scholarships instantly and start applying today by conducting a free college scholarship search at Scholarships.com.

ADVERTISEMENT

Discuss

Share your thoughts and perhaps thousands of students will benefit from your unique insight on the subject!



If you can read this, don't touch the following fields


 
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
Metallica, an extremely popular heavy metal band from the 80’s is recently enjoying new-found popularity and relevance with a new generation, thanks to the popular television show “Stranger Things”. Not only did they create the incredibly popular song “Enter Sandman” and “One”, they have also founded the Metallica Scholars Initiative. $100,000 in scholarships will be available for students studying in career programs through Metallica’s All Within My Hands Foundation (AWMH).

Metallica Foundation Offers Trades-Based Scholarships

November 30, 2022
by Kevin Ladd
Metallica, an extremely popular heavy metal band from the 80’s is recently enjoying new-found popularity and relevance with a new generation, thanks to the popular television show “Stranger Things”.
When it comes to financial aid, there are two types that tend to be seen as the most desirable: scholarships and grants. But while most people are familiar with scholarships, grants are less well understood.

Grants: the Other Way to Get Free College Money

November 22, 2022
by Zina Kumok
When it comes to financial aid, there are two types that tend to be seen as the most desirable: scholarships and grants. But while most people are familiar with scholarships, grants are less well
With the fall semester almost ending, it’s a good time to apply for scholarships. Students can utilize their Thanksgiving break to apply for the scholarships listed below. Want more opportunities? They can also find a full list of November scholarships here.

Top 5 November Scholarships

November 15, 2022
by Zina Kumok
With the fall semester almost ending, it’s a good time to apply for scholarships. Students can utilize their Thanksgiving break to apply for the scholarships listed below. Want more opportunities?
We're almost midway through November, National Scholarship Month, already and now is the time to search, find and apply for scholarships. Below, we have put together a list of scholarships specifically for women, all with deadlines this month.

Top 6 November Scholarships for Women

November 9, 2022
by Kevin Ladd
We're almost midway through November, National Scholarship Month, already and now is the time to search, find and apply for scholarships. Below, we have put together a list of scholarships
The Elks Foundation Most Valuable Student Scholarship
You don’t have to be a member of the Elks or even have a relative who is a member to be eligible to win this $50,000 scholarship. The top 20 scholars will interview with the national judges. These 20 finalists will be vying for two first-place awards of $50,000; two second-place awards of $40,000; and two third-place awards of $30,000. The remaining 14 finalists will receive awards of $20,000. The 480 runners-up will receive fifth-place scholarships of $4,000.

November Scholarship Spotlight

November 2, 2022
by Kevin Ladd
The Elks Foundation Most Valuable Student Scholarship You don’t have to be a member of the Elks or even have a relative who is a member to be eligible to win this $50,000 scholarship. The top 20
November is National Scholarship Month and kicks off the three months with the most scholarships available; November, December and January. This is the time to not only look, but seriously research and apply for scholarships. It is also the 
time to see what is ahead and make sure you are prepared to apply for and win as many scholarships as possible.

November Scholarships for National Scholarship Month

October 25, 2022
by Kevin Ladd
November is National Scholarship Month and kicks off the three months with the most scholarships available; November, December and January. This is the time to not only look, but seriously research

    Nursing school, CNA, RN, RNA, pre-med, medical school… There are so many paths one can take in medicine, none of them cheap. As is true with all college majors, the best way to avoid a mountain of student loan debt once you have graduated is 
    to find scholarships and grants. Those who will ultimately be getting their M.D. spend even more time in school, often 8 years or even longer, making it even more important to find and apply for scholarships.

Top Scholarships for Nursing and Medical Students

October 18, 2022
by Kevin Ladd
Nursing school, CNA, RN, RNA, pre-med, medical school… There are so many paths one can take in medicine, none of them cheap. As is true with all college majors, the best way to avoid a mountain

        Fall is here, and so are the deadlines for these amazing October scholarships. There are over 100 scholarships due in October, but we picked out our favorite choices and the ones we think will appeal to the most students. Don't miss the full list of October
        college scholarships.

The Best Scholarships for October

September 28, 2022
by Ashley Eneriz
Fall is here, and so are the deadlines for these amazing October scholarships. There are over 100 scholarships due in October, but we picked out our favorite choices and the ones we think
More women than ever are pursuing science, technology, engineering, or mathematics (STEM) career fields. To help motivate and continue the growth of gender diversity in these fields, substantial STEM scholarships for women are available each year. These STEM scholarships can fund thousands of dollars for your college dreams and help your resume stand out.

Women in STEM Scholarships

September 7, 2022
by Ashley Eneriz
More women than ever are pursuing science, technology, engineering, or mathematics (STEM) career fields. To help motivate and continue the growth of gender diversity in these fields, substantial STEM