CUNY to forgo SAT, ACT exams until 2023

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Students applying to a City University of New York (CUNY) college won’t be required to submit their SAT or ACT exam scores to be admitted through the spring of 2023.

CUNY, along with many other universities, temporarily suspended the standardized exams requirement in the middle of the pandemic. According to FairTest: the National Center for Fair and Open Testing, at least 1,400 four-year colleges and universities in the United States won’t require the SAT or ACT college entrance exams for fall 2022. According to their data, that’s more than 60% of the 2,330 undergraduate colleges across the country. Some schools have decided to only exempt students who meet minimum grade or class rank criteria, while others use test scores only for placement purposes.

The public university’s board resolution stated that the suspension should be extended, “In light of the ongoing COVID-19 public health emergency, which continues to pose a threat to the continuity of business and education, challenge prospective students to effectively plan, and has disproportionately affected the most vulnerable communities in the City.”

The City Department of Education asked for an extension of the suspension because of “the negative impact the pandemic has had on the number of students taking such tests,” according to the resolution. A DOE spokeswoman said the agency in February supported CUNY’s temporary extension of the testing suspension for the 2021-22 school year “given that our high schools were fully remote at the time.” However, she added, “now that we are on the road to a full reopening in September, we are evaluating what makes sense for 2022-23 and beyond.”

CUNY plans to continue its admissions standards “through more sophisticated practices, including the use of more information from high school transcripts, with a focus on performance in key subjects, and the expansion of the use of student essays and letters of recommendation as appropriate,” the resolution says.

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