Yale to Require Standardized Test Scores for Admissions

Yale University will require standardized test scores for admission for students applying to enter in the fall of 2025, becoming the second Ivy League university to abandon test-optional policies that had been widely embraced during the Covid pandemic.

Yale officials said in an announcement on Thursday that the shift to test-optional policies might have unwittingly harmed students from lower-income families whose test scores could have helped their chances.

While it will require standardized tests, Yale said its policy would be “test flexible,” permitting students to submit scores from subject-based Advanced Placement or International Baccalaureate tests in lieu of SAT or ACT scores.

Yale’s decision, which will not affect students who applied during the current admissions cycle, followed a similar decision in February from Dartmouth College. Dartmouth, in Hanover, N.H., said an analysis had found that hundreds of students from lower socioeconomic backgrounds who had solid scores — in the 1,400 range on the SAT — had declined to submit them, fearing that they fell too far below the perfect 1,600. In 2022, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology announced that it had reinstated its testing requirement.

These institutions remain in the minority. Many decided to keep their test optional policies in place as the pandemic waned.

The number of students taking the SAT dropped to 1.7 million in 2022, a decline from 2.2 million in 2020.

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