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‘They weren’t faring as well’: Red state university reinstates standardized testing requirement


Daily Caller News Foundation

The University of Texas (UT) Austin announced Monday it will require applicants to submit standardized test scores to boost student success.

UT Austin will require standardized testing scores as part of applications to the fall 2025 semester after having suspended the policy due to limited testing options during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the university news release. The university asserted that standardized testing scores are associated with higher graduation rates, and that submitted scores help to place students in programs and majors that can maximize success.

“We looked at our students and found that, in many ways, they weren’t faring as well,” UT President Jay Hartzell said, according to The New York Times, regarding students who did not submit scores.

“Our goals are to attract the best and brightest students and to make sure every student is successful once they are here. Standardized scores combined with high school GPA support this goal by improving early identification of students who demonstrated the greatest academic achievement, the most potential, and those who can most benefit from support through our student success programs,” Hartzell said in the news release.

Higher standardized test scores often correlated with better collegiate academic performance, according to the university news release. Of more than 9,000 first-year students enrolled at the university in 2023, those who opted to have their standardized test scores considered had an average GPA of 0.86 points higher during their first fall semester.

“Our experience during the test-optional period reinforced that standardized testing is a valuable tool for deciding who is admitted and making sure those students are placed in majors that are the best fit. Also, with an abundance of high school GPAs surrounding 4.0, especially among our auto-admits, an SAT or ACT score is a proven differentiator that is in each student’s and the University’s best interest,” Hartzell continued.

Several elite universities reinstated standardized testing requirements, including Brown University, Dartmouth CollegeYale University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

UT did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.

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Republished with permission from Daily Caller News Foundation

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