Preparing for College

Can I Send Test Scores to Colleges That Haven't Heard of Me Yet?

Question: Do you have to wait until you get some type of letter from a school to send them your ACT results or can you just send them to the school out of the blue with out them even knowing that you are thinking about their college?

Good question! Colleges are accustomed to receiving SAT and ACT scores for students who haven’t yet applied … and, often, who haven’t even expressed any other sort of interest either. This is inevitable because students commonly take these tests as early as freshman or sophomore year in high school and almost always by the end of junior year, well before applications are submitted. Many want to take advantage of their “free” score reports, even if they’re not 100 percent certain of where they’ll end up applying.

Thus the colleges all have their own systems of filing away the scores they receive until the applications start to roll in. Then they will check their files to see if they have scores on record that match the applications.

So don’t worry about college admission staff tossing your scores in the trash while exclaiming, “Who the heck is this kid?” They’ll figure out what to do with those scores once you eventually apply. And also don’t worry about sending scores to a college that you may ultimately scratch from you list. The colleges will figure that out, too.

(posted 2/1/2012)