Dropping ACT/SAT Requirement for Admissions and Scholarships

Published: September 16, 2020 | Author: Savannah Byers | Read Time: 2 minutes

SUU drops standardized testing requirementBecoming the first public university in Utah to do so, Southern Utah University has dropped the ACT/SAT requirement for both the admissions process and made it optional for merit-based scholarships beginning with the 2021-2022 academic year. This permanent change was made in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and will continue to stand as an effort to offer equitable access to both admissions and scholarships for a larger number of students.

“Our students are more than just a test score to us,” said Brandon Wright, SUU’s assistant vice president for enrollment management. “This new approach gives students an option. They can either use their GPA or standardized test scores to qualify for a scholarship. It’s really that simple. This is our way of recognizing the individual strengths of each and every future SUU student.”

With this new modification, students will have the chance to use either their unweighted GPA or their ACT/SAT score to apply to the university and merit-based scholarships. This not only eliminates a requirement made difficult to accomplish because of the pandemic, but it also gives students an opportunity to qualify for more generous scholarships based either on their high GPA or their high test scores rather than a combination of both.

Many universities are waiving ACT/SAT scores for the admissions process, but not for scholarships. 84% of students are eligible for some type of financial aid, but under the current circumstances, not all students can take and/or retake standardized tests to fulfill scholarship requirements. Even during a global pandemic, students should have access to the scholarships they would otherwise be awarded.

“This new scholarship index casts a much wider net of financial support for students, and we are able to provide support for students who otherwise might be overlooked,” said Amie Tukuafu, associate director of admissions and recruitment. “This semester we would have been able to award more than 800 additional scholarships to students who did not previously qualify, and this will continue for future T-Birds.”

This fall, SUU was ranked third in the nation for lowest student debt by U.S. News and World Report. Last year, before this major change, SUU ranked first for the lowest student debt among public universities in Utah, and second out of all universities in the state just behind Brigham Young University.

This new change is one of many ways SUU actively keeps its commitment to being an affordable and high-quality institution.

Tags: Financial Aid Admissions

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