Universities change admission requirements

Lindsay Dodd, Staff Reporter

After many years of students being required to take the ACT to be admitted into their particular college, several colleges have made the decision to waive ACT requirements after the everlasting effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The ACT is a standardized test that most juniors and seniors take to receive a score used for college admissions. The test covers four areas of academics: English, math, reading and science. It also offers an optional writing test as well. 

During the test, students have specific amounts of time to complete each section. The English section is 45 minutes with 75 questions to answer, while the science section is 35 minutes with 40 questions to answer. 

The American Colleges Testing program has been around for 62 years, but after years of students dreading the test, many colleges have decided to exempt it from the admissions process. 

Many senior students from the 2019-20 school year had stated that during the pandemic, their families had faced financial difficulties, which made it difficult to see college in their future. Since so many students have had this same issue, many colleges have become lenient with their requirements. 

Many 2020 college freshmen and 2021 high school seniors have been allowed to do away with their ACT scores for the 2020-21 school year and 2021-22 school year. 

Instead of focusing on what ACT or SAT score a student has received, admissions staff will focus more on essays, grades, coursework and the students’ interest in attending college. 

Although many colleges will only be removing tests from admissions for the upcoming school year, other colleges have decided to allow students to eliminate this requirement from admissions beyond the 2021 – 22 school year. 

The University of Virginia came out with a statement in January saying that they will continue with their “test-optional” requirements for the next two years because they want high school students to focus more on their successes in their families, schools and communities. 

As for local universities, such as Kansas State, which have never required an ACT score only a GPA [Grade Point Average], they have also decided to do away with this requirement. Recently, Kansas University announced that they would stop requiring this test score, after the COVID-19 pandemic, which made it difficult for students to take the test. This recent change will help them remain competitive nationally since many other Kansas schools do not require it. 

Although schools have removed the ACT from their requirements for the coming school years, colleges still continue to push high school success and hard work. With effort and dedication, students should not be worried about their acceptance to college.