Standardized testing optional for students applying to Clemson University in 2021-2022 school year


CLEMSON, S.C. (WSPA) – Clemson University is waiving standardized test scores as a requirement for admission in the 2021-2022 school year.

Clemson University’s enrollment management team said the decision is a reaction to the coronavirus pandemic, which left many students uncomfortable risking their health to take a standardized test, and that they hopes this will minimize stress for prospective students.

If an applicant does not submit standardized test scores, school officials say it will not affect eligibility for financial aid. The Clemson Honors College will also review applicants without standardized test scores, including for the National Scholars program.

Instead, the admissions review process will consider a variety of factors, mainly focusing on students’ academic performance in high school.

Several current students at Clemson University expressed concern about keeping the playing level even if standardized testing is optional. “There are going to be some students that have already taken the test and done very well and they might have the same stats and grades and G.P.A. and activities as someone who didn’t take the test at all, so how does that compare?” senior Elizabeth Singleton said.

Associate Vice President for Enrollment Management at Clemson University David Kuskowki said he still encourages all students applying for the 2021-2022 school year to take the SAT or ACT test if they are able to do so, because the more information they have on a student, the better their chances are in being accepted. However, he said management does not want to discourage those unable to take the SAT or ACT test from applying to Clemson University.

“We’ve heard from families, ‘I’ve worked so hard and I have this great score!’ and my response is, ‘Thats amazing, and that will help you,'” Kuskowski said. “That will advantage you. We don’t want to disadvantage a student though, because they can’t get to a test or they can’t re-take a test because the test isn’t available, either because it was canceled or because the testing centers aren’t able to accommodate the volume,” he said.

Clemson officials also encourages students to take the SAT or ACT because it is still required for the state’s Palmetto Fellows Scholarship and they say it’s important to be competitive for the SC Life scholarship.

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