Measure lets undergraduate applicants choose whether to include standardized test scores as part of application
Marquette University today announced its decision to become test optional, offering domestic and international undergraduate applicants the choice to include standardized test scores as part of their application. The policy of no longer requiring ACT and/or SAT scores from all applicants is effective for students applying for entry in fall 2020.
In developing the new policy, the Office of Undergraduate Admissions sought and gained broad support from university stakeholders, including the Board of Trustees, University Academic Senate, University Board of Undergraduate Studies, Marquette University Student Government Executive Board, Office of Mission and Ministry, Office of the Vice President for Inclusive Excellence, Dean’s Council, Young Alumni Council, and the National Alumni Board, among others.
“Our Catholic, Jesuit mission calls on us to keep a Marquette education accessible to a diverse population of students,” says President Michael R. Lovell. “We will further open our doors by making standardized test scores optional in our undergraduate admissions process.”
Marquette now joins a select group of top 100 national universities (based on U.S. News and World Report Best Colleges), as well as a growing number of Jesuit universities that have removed the ACT or SAT as an admission requirement.
“Four years of strong performance in rigorous high school coursework has always been the most important measure in Marquette’s holistic admission review,” says Acting Provost Kimo Ah Yun. “Requiring standardized tests was never intended to dissuade individuals from applying who felt they had the capacity to succeed here. We acknowledge, however, that requiring the SAT or ACT may have led to this unintended consequence and aim to address that now.”
Brian Troyer, dean of undergraduate admissions, says he and his team look forward to implementing this policy and continuing their work of carefully evaluating all applicants for admission to Marquette.
“We believe that the Jesuit concept of cura personalis extends to the admissions review process. We have always engaged in a student-centered approach to our work, and the decision to adopt a test-optional policy reinforces those values,” Troyer says. “Students can decide how to best represent their capacity for success at the college level. We believe students are who they are because of their life experiences, work ethic, and their engagement in and out of the classroom.”
Troyer added that the university’s holistic admission review will continue to consider academic achievement in conjunction with a student’s unique talents, leadership and service activities, application essay(s), school profile, letters of recommendation, and any other information a student wishes to submit for consideration.
“Considering a variety of application materials within the context of a student’s application file will ensure we continue to admit future Marquette University students who will succeed academically and graduate ready to be changemakers in their communities — individuals who are eager to answer our call to Be the Difference,” he says.
Per the new policy, for students who choose to submit an ACT and/or SAT score, the score will be evaluated as a component in the admission review process. All applicants, regardless of test score submission, will have the opportunity to qualify for Marquette’s array of scholarship awards.
Marquette will continue to analyze the correlation between standardized testing and academic achievement in college and will evaluate this policy on an ongoing basis.
More information on the test-optional policy, including a set of frequently asked questions, is available online.