University of Washington removes standardized test requirements permanently

SEATTLE -- The University of Washington announced Thursday that it was permanently removing the standardized test scores requirement for incoming students starting in the fall of 2021.

Test scores from the SAT or ACT were previously required as part of the application process for new students.

“The UW is dedicated to creating opportunities for the most promising students to learn and discover how they can make an impact,” UW President Ana Mari Cauce said. “Careful analysis and research showed that standardized testing did not add meaningfully to the prediction of student success that our holistic admission process already provides.”

The requirement was already temporarily lifted for the incoming fall class because there werent' enough test sites available during the COVID-19 pandemic.

UW said that admissions officers had been studying any possible link between test scores and success in school. They found little correlation between the two.

“Ultimately, this decision is about access and student success,” said Joseph Janes, chair of the Faculty Senate and a professor in the Information School. “The faculty, after careful and thoughtful consideration in partnership with our administration, have recognized that students’ potential achievement over four years or more of their university education can’t be measured by the result of one test on one day. And we are hopeful that this move will open doors to our university through which will come generations of magnificent students.”

The change was specifically for the Seattle campus, according to UW News. UW Bothell and UW Tacoma planned to review their own policies.