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The Ivy Coach Daily

September 24, 2021

Cornell Extends Test-Optional Policy

A bridge sits between yellow and green-leaved trees at Cornell University.
Cornell will be test-optional for at least a couple of more years (photo credit: Justin Ennis).

Cornell University, the first of the Ivy League institutions to go test-optional in 2020 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, has extended its test-optional policy in admissions through fall 2024. Fall 2023 and 2024 applicants will not be required to submit SAT or ACT scores. And why is Cornell’s admissions committee extending the test-optional policy? Well, applications surged to Cornell last year, the admission rate plummeted, and the school rose from 18th in the US News & World Report annual ranking to 17th. As the saying goes, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. So it should come as little surprise that the trailblazing Cornell admissions committee is choosing to extend its test-optional policy. In fact, we believe the other Ivy League institutions will all soon follow its lead.

As Vee Cipperman and Kayla Riggs report for The Cornell Daily Sun in a piece entitled “Cornell Waives Standardized Testing Requirement for First-Year Applications Through Fall 2024,” “Cornell’s decision to extend this policy acknowledged the ongoing risks of COVID-19 in testing centers across the globe. The statement added that Cornell is also entering a two-year ‘deliberate experimental review’ period to guide future admissions testing policy requirements. ‘We will engage both in self-study about the role of testing in promoting access and success at Cornell and systematically review admission assessments in partnership with other universities and higher education organizations,’ the statement reads. Under this policy, three colleges –– the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, the Cornell SC Johnson College of Business and the College of Architecture, Art and Planning –– will not accept standardized test scores. The Colleges of Arts and Sciences, the College of Engineering and the College of Human Ecology, along with the School of Industrial and Labor Relations, maintains a test-optional policy for SAT and ACT scores.”

Do our readers think that all of the Ivy League institutions, like Cornell, will be test-optional through fall 2024? Let us know your thoughts by posting a comment below. We look forward to hearing from you!

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