Temporary Test-Optional Policy FAQ
Due to the challenges that students are facing due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Barnard has been test-optional for the 2020-2021 application cycle. Barnard is also extending the temporary test-optional policy for students applying for Fall/Spring 2022 and Fall/Spring 2023 admission. See our FAQ below to learn more about this temporary policy change. If you have further questions, please feel free to reach out to our office at email@example.com.
Barnard is extending the temporary SAT and ACT test-optional admission policy for students applying for Spring 2022 and Spring 2023 transfer admission and Fall 2022 and Fall 2023 first-year or transfer admission. Students may apply without submitting standardized test scores from the SAT or ACT exam and no other materials will be requested in lieu of test scores.
Barnard recognizes the challenges that students are facing due to the COVID-19 pandemic and feels this decision will allow students to prepare their upcoming applications without the fear that they may not be able to take the exam. This decision was made in consultation with the President and the Board of Trustees and is not intended as an admissions policy shift, but rather as a temporary measure driven by the current circumstances.
Students can submit standardized test scores if they choose to do so. We understand there may be difficulty in scheduling an exam date and students may not be able to take the exam more than once as in previous years. If you choose to submit your test scores, they will be evaluated within our holistic review process.
If you choose to not submit test scores, we will not require any additional documents. Students will not be disadvantaged in any way by not submitting standardized test scores.
Barnard has always practiced a holistic and contextual evaluation process and this will be no different for the upcoming application cycles. We consider each applicant in the context of her school, community, and individual story. Barnard seeks students who are intellectually motivated, community-minded, and excited for academic exploration within the liberal arts.
The temporary test-optional policy only applies to the SAT and ACT. If you have not had four years of English as the primary language of instruction, you may be required to submit an English language exam. Please view our website to see if you qualify for a waiver for this exam.
Division I-Ivy Varsity athletes planning to participate in the Barnard-Columbia Athletic Consortium are still required to comply with the admissions guidance and policy requirements set forth by the Ivy League Athletic Consortium. Given the ongoing issues with standardized testing in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Ivy League will not require prospective student-athletes to submit test scores during the 2020-21 application cycle. Full consideration will be given to all applicants, regardless of whether they have the opportunity to take a standardized test.
Future testing requirements for the class entering in Fall 2022 have yet to be determined.
Barnard and the Arthur O. Eve HEOP Scholars Program provide access to higher education for bright and motivated students who are economically disadvantaged. Once a student is admitted to Barnard as an Arthur O. Eve HEOP Scholar, the program provides academic support services to ensure her success in college. Students must still be New York State residents with US citizenship or permanent residency, meet the academic guidelines of an 85 GPA or higher, and present a low-income profile as determined by New York State guidelines. We will continue to evaluate New York State Regents exams, high school course curriculum, and grades as part of our holistic review.
Barnard does not require that students take the AP exam if they are taking the course. However, if you do take the exam, we hope that you will self-report those scores. Scores will be used to provide context to the application, and, if the student chooses to enroll, may be used for credit or placement for courses.
Students should still have their schools submit their predicted IB/A-level scores along with their academic transcripts (internal grades/marks). Final IB and A-Level scores should be submitted if the student chooses to enroll.
When students preview the final PDF version of their application, should they choose to self-report scores, they will not see their test scores on the PDF as Barnard has opted to have those hidden from view. Barnard will still receive their scores in the downloaded information from the Common/Coalition App. This precaution is in place for those who may self-report scores but wish to not have them reviewed. Students may also self-report their test scores in their Barnard Applicant Portal.
Prior to the application deadline date, students can choose to change their test-optional status - whether they are choosing to opt in or out - by making the request in writing to firstname.lastname@example.org. We will not accept scores from applicants who applied under the test-optional policy after the deadline has passed.
Students who would like to have scores considered but do not have scores in hand by the application deadline date should submit their application indicating they would like their scores reviewed. Students will have until Nov 15th for ED and Feb 15th for RD to submit their scores or change to test-optional. We will not be able to consider scores submitted after these deadlines and students who do not submit scores will be automatically changed to test-optional after these dates. Students who do not submit testing will absolutely not be penalized in any way
If you are applying through Early Decision and wish to submit test scores, you must have taken the test before our November 1 application deadline. If you are applying through Regular Decision and wish to submit test scores, students may submit testing taken in January provided the scores will reach us by Feb 15th.
Students who are deferred from ED to RD will not be allowed to change their testing status. If they were reviewed under the test-optional policy, we will not review any testing in Regular Decision. We expect deferred applicants to write to us to reiterate their interest in Barnard and to send their final first semester grades.
If you choose to submit your SAT or ACT score, you must submit all subsections and the composite score. For the SAT, you must submit the Math and Evidence-Based Reading and Writing (EBRW) sections. For the ACT, you must submit the English, Math, Reading, and Science sections. We do not review the essay/writing portion of either exam.
This is a very individual decision and can only be decided by the student. As with all aspects of the college process, we want students to engage in self-advocacy and make choices that are best for them. Under this temporary policy, the Office of Admissions has no preference whether a student chooses to submit scores or not. All students will be reviewed in a holistic and contextual review, regardless of whether they submit scores or not.