Princeton Requiring Graded Writing Sample
While the headline grabber may have been that Princeton University recently dropped the SAT or ACT essay admission requirement, this shouldn’t have been the headline. After all, when a highly selective university drops the SAT or ACT essay requirement, it means absolutely nothing other than the school is trying to encourage students who have bad essay scores — or no scores at all — to still apply. Students should still absolutely submit SAT or ACT essay scores. As our chorus goes, the more students who apply, the lower the admission rate will invariably be and the better that school will be ranked in “US News & World Report.” Rather, the headline should have read “Princeton University Now Requires Graded Class Paper.” Because that — in the world of college admissions — is news.
Princeton’s New Graded Paper Requirement
As reports Nick Anderson in an article for “The Washington Post” entitled “Princeton and Stanford drop requirements for essay testing,” “Princeton, the Ivy League university in New Jersey, added a twist to its policy shift: All applicants must submit a graded writing sample from high school. It would prefer that work be in English or history.” That, our loyal readers, is the real story. And, yes, the paper should be an English or history paper — not in math, not in science, not in any other subject. They want an English or history paper so do submit an English or history paper.
And to those students and parents who think a great private college counselor can’t help students craft an outstanding paper for their English or history class, well, they’re mistaken. Of course, most private college counselors don’t know how to bring out the best writing in their students but at Ivy Coach, well, we sure can! It’s a big part of what we do. It’s a big part of our secret sauce. This new Princeton requirement marks another reason why we encourage students to come to Ivy Coach as early as possible — because we want to help them edit this paper so that Princeton sees the student’s best possible writing (before a teacher grades the paper). Good writing is about rewriting. It’s true of the world’s greatest novelists. It’s true of the world’s greatest TV and film writers. Students applying to college are no exception.
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