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Meredith College Makes Test-Optional Undergraduate Admissions Policy Permanent

By Melyssa Allen

Meredith College Makes Test-Optional Undergraduate Admissions Policy Permanent

By Melyssa Allen

Meredith College is making permanent a test-optional admissions policy that was initially adopted because of the pandemic.

Test-optional means that an entrance exam, like the SAT or ACT, is not a required component of the application for admission. Under the test-optional policy, prospective Meredith students are neither advantaged nor disadvantaged for admission by their decision whether to submit an SAT or ACT score with their application.

“Our temporary test-optional policy was the result of COVID – the pandemic created unequal access to exams for students and risks to their health if they were required to submit a test score to apply to college,” said Director of Admission Shery Boyles.

President Jo Allen said because the pandemic made in-person testing more complicated or impossible for many potential college students, it was the perfect time to adopt a test-optional approach.

“That gap in test offering gave us the opportunity to see how our own measures of students’ preparation could be equal or even better predictors of their likelihood of college success,” said Allen.

Throughout the fall of 2020, Meredith’s Admission Committee reviewed and discussed national research about gaps in test scores that are tied to demographic and socio-economic environments and access to tests and tutors. The decision to make the test-optional policy permanent was based on research and the College’s own experience under the policy in 2020.

“We believe the test-optional policy creates the opportunity for a more equitable application process,” said Boyles. “The committee also reviewed Meredith’s retention data. We’re confident that an academic GPA is a better predictor of academic success than a standardized test.”

Prospective students who choose to apply test optional will still be considered for Meredith scholarships. Those with strong GPAs will be awarded Impact Scholarships, merit scholarships, or merit tuition grants.