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Test Optional & Football


Replies to: Test Optional & Football

  • classicalmamaclassicalmama Registered User Posts: 2,261 Senior Member
    I agree with what @Sue22 says about TO schools. Schools like Bates make it clear that they don't want your test scores unless they are very high. I hear what you are saying about your ACT being, in a way, better than your GPA. The bottom line is, though, that test scores are just a bar to cross in any admissions process, not something that schools give a lot of weight to. And yes, you're right that the reported standardized test scores are artificially high at TO schools. That's a purposeful move on their part--a way to satisfy the number crunchers at U.S. News while refusing to have to take those tests more seriously than they want to. And good on them, I say.

    I think you're focusing on the wrong thing here. Take the coaches and admissions at their word about tests. Worry more about your GPA. Even if you are a junior (your post says something about senior year, but I don't know how that can be), you can put in great effort in your (rigorous!) first quarter senior year classes, and that will matter more than whether or not you submit a solid but meh ACT score. Ultimately, though, it's going to come down to how badly the coaches want you--it doesn't sound like your academic creds. will eliminate you from admission to a good D3 school, but they're not likely to help you either.

  • Sue22Sue22 Registered User Posts: 5,789 Senior Member
    The interesting thing is that US News assesses a substantial penalty to schools that don't report standardized test scores for a certain minimum percentage of the class. I can't remember the exact number, but it's something like 75% or 80%. In other words, if schools are looking to game the USNWR rankings going TO is an extremely poor way to do it!
  • merc81merc81 Registered User Posts: 9,106 Senior Member
    "For example, if the average ACT range is 28-31, and people with a <27 don't submit, then next year 28 would be below average if that's the lowest getting submitted. Then the average would increase."

    Though the math on this is not complicated, and has been neatly explained above, few people -- even those involved directly or indirectly with admission -- seem to fully consider its implications. Below average scores are obviously commonly submitted, otherwise test-optional schools would approach perfect "average" reported scores in almost all cases.

    In terms of Bates, discussed on this thread, their actual middle ACT range would likely be 27-31 (inferred from their reported 28-32 range and 35% non-submit cohort). Your 28 score would place you clearly within their range and, by meaningful criteria, should be reported as a substantiating data point on your behalf. Whether the school itself sees it this way is another question, however.
  • MidwestmomofboysMidwestmomofboys Registered User Posts: 3,758 Senior Member
    @fbislife -- thanks for asking, yes, my test optional kid was admitted to all his schools, mid-range midwest LACs, where he was also a recruit. The EA option really helped get some solid choices on the table starting in November, to take some of the pressure off. As we worked through the process, I realized that there was only one school we came across, Denison, which says on its admissions website that, after the admission and matriculation decision, they ask test optional students to submit their test scores as they use it for research purposes and do not share it with any other office etc. on campus.

    My kid had most demanding curriculum (full IB) and strong gpa, but is a lousy standardized test taker so very lop-sided scores. Coaches suggested test optional, which is what he did. I will say, even at Wooster, which is not test optional and so saw his scores, he did very well with merit award, which I did not expect.
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