Preparing for College

Loyola Test-Optional Counterpoint

Earlier this week, I wrote about Maryland's Loyola College going test optional. That is, they will no longer require applicants to submit SAT or other standardized test scores. Apparently, that decision does not sit well with "Concerned Alumni, Students, Parents and Faculty of Loyola Maryland".

One of (if not the) chief spokesperson for this group is Class of 2009 Loyola graduate, Richard M. Fogal. The final statement of his entreaty is the one that had the most impact for me:

"Please join the movement to prevent Loyola from becoming the quintessential "safety school."

I'm unaware of any statistics or other hard data that show a positive correlation between a college going test optional and a tumble in "prestige" (whatever that means) or selectivity. As I cited in my last post, there are some so-called "elite" colleges among the test-optional crowd. Perhaps one of the "hidden" motivations for a school going test optional is the need to inspire more applicants, which, in turn, might lead to a better enrollment yield. One can only speculate about this, though, since the reasons for strategic moves like this are seldom revealed.

In any case, what do you think? Is it good or bad for a college to go test optional?

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