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SAT subject tests are NOT truly optional for middle/upper middle class applicants at elite colleges!


Replies to: SAT subject tests are NOT truly optional for middle/upper middle class applicants at elite colleges!

  • eastcoast101eastcoast101 Registered User Posts: 450 Member
    edited November 2018
    My child is an athlete at a UAA school and did not submit subject test scores. Clearly it didn’t hurt in the admissions process that we didn’t submit them.
  • anon145anon145 Registered User Posts: 564 Member
    what school? what sport? My point to the person asking is for general applicants recommended but not required on websites should be read as recommended by unhooked/non recruited athlete. Not all schools require tests. Carnegie mellon tells at least non-helmet sports kids they need tests. Not every UAA school is the same. in the NESCAC Bowdoin says it's test optional but I have no idea if they really mean it. Test optional for a recruited athlete doesn't mean test optional for general applicants. U. Chicago and Wash U. likely have very different test requirements than Rochester and case western
  • eastcoast101eastcoast101 Registered User Posts: 450 Member
    Happy to share the school and sport in a PM. The school he attends lists it as recommended. He considered applying to CM but decided not to because he did not want to take SATIIs.
  • anon145anon145 Registered User Posts: 564 Member
    no problem - I'm just trying to post helpful information to future readers. I was shocked that CMU required SAT2s from white upper middle class recruited athletes, so I assume their "recommended" status for "regular" applicants definitely applies. I was also shocked because long term MIT would be a better option for many than CMU due to identical testing requirements.
  • sf0828sf0828 Registered User Posts: 10 New Member
    I just want to say that I personally asked a UPenn admissions rep on campus about their stance on subject tests, and she responded to me (an obvious upper middle class person), that I should “only submit them if they enhance your application.” What I am getting from this is that if they do not add value to my application, I should not submit them.
  • akaybeeakaybee Registered User Posts: 2 New Member
    I don’t agree 100%. It depends on a few other things. First, why do they want to see SAT2s? Because not all high schools have the same teaching quality, so a 95 in Anytown HS is harder to assess than a 95 at an elite HS. So if you’re at an elite HS, or a HS that is well-known to the colleges for having a rigorous curriculum, SAT2s aren’t important. Second, if you’re taking APs, those are more valuable than SAT2s. Who cares about your Bio SAT2 grade if you got a 5 on the Bio AP exam? This is not just my opinion — I was worried about exactly this because my DD didn’t want to take SAT2s so I called the colleges on her list that “recommended” but didn’t require SAT2s (mainly Ivys) and they confirmed exactly what I said above — my DD is at a well-known HS and will graduate with 9 APs so they said there’s no need for her to take SAT2s. That said, this did cause her to drop Georgetown from her list, because they require SAT2s.
  • 4junior4junior Registered User Posts: 249 Junior Member
    @sf0828 I think the adcoms response was code for "if you submit them they need to be quite good as we can see you have had plenty of test prep based on your background". A good to moderately great score from a well-off kid will not enhance the application.
  • anon145anon145 Registered User Posts: 564 Member
    that is very logical, however, I'd ask why to SAT or ACT math scores matter much more than a calculus BC score of 5, when the math on the standardized tests is much lower than Calc BC
  • 2ndthreekids2ndthreekids Registered User Posts: 10 New Member
    My child was just admitted to a top 10 nationally ranked school, ED. We are upper middle class, no hooks. She did not submit SAT subject test scores because while she did fine (740/720 on Math 2/Bio), they weren't 800's and they didn't help her profile. She was 35 on all sections of the ACT, and incredibly rigorous hs curriculum. If ACT and curriculum/grades are stellar, they say enough about a student's academic readiness.
  • NCKrisNCKris Registered User Posts: 140 Junior Member
    Is this Duke by any chance ? Duke states Subject Tests are not required, when submitting ACT. I don't know of any Ivies with the same policy.
  • 2ndthreekids2ndthreekids Registered User Posts: 10 New Member
    Yes. She took ACT once, did very well on all AP/IB tests, all A's in high school with a very rigorous curriculum. What's left to prove ? Aside from foreign language excellence/proficiency, I'm not sure what subject tests are supposed to prove in terms of academic ability that's much different than the transcript and standardized test scores. For those of us who don't have our kids do test prep classes, score one for the regular kids...
  • irishheroirishhero Registered User Posts: 8 New Member
    Hi, I got a 36 on the ACT (one and done), but I still submitted my subject scores to a top 20 school (710 Chem and 790 Math II). Maybe it didn't make a difference or perhaps made my 36 look less impressive, but I got admitted REA. Not sure if it would have made a difference either way, but from this thread I thought it was the right thing to do, and my college counselor advised me to send them.
  • Ozzy08Ozzy08 Registered User Posts: 15 Junior Member
    If you do not submit test scores then you must shine in other areas such as EC's and recommendations.
  • LA91116LA91116 Registered User Posts: 16 Junior Member
    When we asked our public HS counselor about Subject Tests, his response was "why take them". Very confusing.
  • pennmotherpennmother Registered User Posts: 1 New Member
    There are nuances as to what else the person has going for them. My daughter is at penn with one subject test, not two. But she has other things on her resume, including the summer program for her major
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