Gustavus Will Make ACT, SAT Optional for Applicants

Myron P. Medcalf, Minneapolis Star Tribune, May 24, 2006

For every high school student who squirms at the thought of taking the ACTs and SATs to get into college, Gustavus Adolphus College says don’t sweat it.

The private liberal arts college in St. Peter, Minn., announced Monday that the test scores of 2007 high school graduates won’t be required for admission, making Gustavus Adolphus the first private and possibly the only four-year college in Minnesota to implement a “test optional” policy on SAT and ACT scores.

Mark Anderson, Gustavus vice president for admission and student financial assistance, said the new policy will broaden the applicant pool and give more students a chance to get into the college. He said the school expects more applicants from diverse communities and backgrounds to apply in the upcoming year.

The new policy wasn’t implemented to attract more students—the school had its highest enrollment during the 2005-06 school year and is downsizing enrollment next year as a result.

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According to the National Center for Fair and Open Testing, about 730 colleges nationwide have reduced the importance of standardized tests in their admission policies.

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