Uplifting the Voices of Princeton Day School

The Spokesman

Uplifting the Voices of Princeton Day School

The Spokesman

Uplifting the Voices of Princeton Day School

The Spokesman

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Colleges Returning Required Standardized Testing


The ever-changing college application process just took another turn. Colleges are now going from test-optional admissions to once again requiring standardized testing,  such as the SAT and ACT. The college application process is  already considered to be extremely difficult and with this returning requirement, so how does this impact future graduating classes? Recently, Ivy League schools like Yale and Dartmouth have reinstated the requirement of standardized testing for students aspiring to go to these schools. 

However, the PDS College Counseling Department is prepared to handle students’ questions regarding these changes. . Allison Anderson, on behalf of the College Counseling Department, said, “The decision to go test optional is a highly individualized one, and students are admitted to wonderful schools under both policies!” Students who have stronger standardized scores may opt to submit scores, while others may choose to spend more time with extracurriculars and class rigor instead. Regardless, it can be stressful for college applicants to think about what colleges are truly looking for in applicants, and with the requirement of standardized testing it can confuse students even more. There are mixed feelings about this decision, some students might think that this is a beneficial factor , others might disagree feeling  it is unfair. Junior Abigail Leonardi mentioned, “I am not in agreement with the decision because I don’t think standardized test scores are an accurate measure of intellect.” No one except college admissions officers truly knows what goes on during their process,  SAT/ACT scores may be beneficial or detrimental to some applicants.

It is uncertain whether standardized tests can be seen as an indicator of success in college, and  Dr. Anderson, with the College Counseling team at PDS said, “In fact, one college admission representative said that a student’s astrological sign is a better predictor of their success in college than their SAT score!”  College admissions have always been difficult to understand , and as students continue to build their applications, they will need to  keep in mind that colleges have ever-evolving selection criteria. Colleges change application content every year, and the following years will be no different. However, the decision of going test-optional relies on the student and what path lies ahead for them. The choice of whether to take the test or not is up to the discretion and comfort level of the student in question.  In the end perhaps, a test-optional student has the same potential of success as a student who submits a score. 

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