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Ultimate List of College Admissions Test Requirements

As you begin compiling the list of colleges to apply to, it can be hard to keep track of all the different testing requirements for each college.

Some schools require you to submit SAT or ACT scores; others do not. Some colleges require you to take additional SAT Subject tests, depending upon your major; some won’t even look at additional test scores! Plus, what do colleges mean when they say a test is required, recommended, or optional?

Luckily, MEK Review has you covered!

We’ve created a list of over 150 popular colleges and their admission testing requirements in 2019-2020!

Key Terms

Here are several key terms you’ll find in our list:

SAT

Refers to the Scholastic Aptitude Test created by College Board. Accepted by most universities to test college readiness. Over 2.1 million students took this test last year! The test consists of 2 Math sections, 1 Evidence Based Reading section, and 1 Writing Section, plus an optional essay that some colleges require prospective students to take, while some do not. The test is scored from a range of 400-1600.

ACT

The SAT’s twin competitor is another college readiness test that is also accepted by most universities. Last year, 1.9 million students took this exam. The test consists of 1 Math section, 1 Science section, 1 English section, and 1 Reading section, plus an optional essay that some colleges require students to take. The test is scored from a range of 1-36.

SAT Subject

Refers to 20 additional standardized tests by College Board, each of which focus on a specific subject such as Science, Math, English, or Foreign Language. The test is scored in a range of 200-800. Historically, more elite colleges have required or recommended these tests to show a student’s proficiency in a particular area.

Here are the 20 subjects offered:

  • Math Level 1
  • Math Level 2
  • Biology Ecological/Molecular
  • Chemistry
  • Physics
  • U.S. History
  • World History
  • Literature
  • Spanish
  • Spanish with Listening
  • French
  • French with Listening
  • Chinese with Listening
  • Italian
  • German
  • German with Listening
  • Modern Hebrew
  • Latin
  • Japanese with Listening
  • Korean with Listening

TOEFL

This test stands for Test of English as a Foreign Language and is designed to test the proficiency of non-English speaking people. It is scored within a range of 0-120.

Many universities require this test and a minimum score for international students. However, for some universities, the TOEFL is only one option of several that an international student can complete to demonstrate fluency in English.

If a school accepts the TOEFL, we listed the minimum score required. Some schools require the test but do not list a minimum score, some colleges only recommend it, and some do not accept it.

If you are not an international student, the TOEFL is not something you need to worry about.

AP

Advanced Placement tests take place at the end of the year, when a student has completed an Advanced Placement course in high school. These tests verify what you have learned and whether you should earn college credit. The AP tests are also often used similarly to SAT Subject tests in that they show your skills and knowledge in a specific subject.

AP tests are scored within a range of 1-5. You must score a minimum of 3 to be considered “college ready” in this subject, although many colleges have even higher standards. In the list below, we only listed AP tests that are required or can be used instead of SAT, ACT, or SAT Subject tests.

Required

If a test is listed as required, that means you MUST take the test and submit your scores for your application to be considered. On our list, the SAT and ACT are listed under one column because almost all schools will accept both, but only require one. Any exceptions are included in this list.

Recommended

Your application won’t be thrown out if you don’t submit this particular test. However, admission officers REALLY want you to submit these scores, so you should more or less consider it required.

Considered

Admissions officers will factor into their admissions decision any test scores submitted by students, but students are not required to send these tests. In other words, if a test score is listed as “considered”, you only want to take this test and submit your scores if your score is high and can help your admission chances. Low scores could hurt your chances.

Optional

This means that the admissions officers do not care whether students submit scores or not. Many schools have made the SAT Subject test optional as a result of the financial constraints these tests have imposed on families. Some colleges will not even review your scores at all, if received.

Key Admissions Testing Trends

While reviewing the list, consider these interesting trends or patterns.

Less Required Standardized Tests

Over the past three years, there are many schools that have made tests optional. For instance, the University of Chicago and Wesleyan, two very competitive schools, are no longer requiring the submission of any tests. Wake Forest University even refers to standardized tests as “evil”!

SAT Subject Tests

Most schools no longer require or recommend the SAT Subject Tests. However, many of the Ivy Leagues or top 10 universities still recommend two SAT Subject tests. Only 1 school in the United States – Georgetown University – recommends 3 SAT Subject tests for all applicants.

Yet when reviewing the list, make note of special testing requirements listed under Other. Many schools offering  7- or 8-year Accelerated Medical Program or certain highly ranked Engineering or Pre-law programs require students to take specific Subject tests. One interesting requirement for Boston University’s Accelerated Medical Program is the submission of three Subject tests: Math, Chemistry and a Foreign Language Subject test!

Foreign Universities

Most of the colleges listed below are in the United States. However, we’ve also listed a few prominent international universities that have been popular among MEK Review students over the years –  McGill in Canada, many United Kingdom schools and Les Roches in Switzerland.

It is interesting to note that universities, primarily in the U.K., do not think highly of U.S. standards in testing. Therefore, instead of the SAT/ACT, UK universities require SAT Subject tests and/or AP tests, with score requirements that are oftentimes beyond a typical U.S. student’s reach.

For instance, Cambridge University requires 5 AP tests with perfect scores of 5 on each test. Please note that Oxford University is in a category of its own and does not value any US standardized tests.  Instead, students are asked to take the Oxford entrance examination at any British embassy or consulate.

Self-Reporting Test Scores

About half of the schools on this list now allow students to self-report their test scores on their application.  If the student is accepted to one of these schools, he or she will be asked to have College Board or ACT submit the official scores to the admissions office for verification.

College Admission Test Requirements

CollegeLocationSAT/ACTSAT SubjectTOEFL 
American UniversityWashington, D.C.OptionalOptionalminimum 100
Amherst CollegeAmherst, MassachusettsRequiredConsideredminimum 100
Arizona State UniversityTempe, ArizonaRequiredOptionalminimum 80
Babson UniversityWellesley, MassachusettsRequiredOptionalminimum 100
Bard CollegeAnnandale-on-Hudson, New YorkOptionalOptionalminimum 100
Bates CollegeLewistown, MaineOptionalOptionalRequired
Barnard CollegeNew York, New YorkRequired, Essay OptionalConsideredminimum 100
Bentley UniversityWaltham, MassachusettsRequiredOptionalminimum 90
Boston CollegeChestnut Hill, MassachusettsRequiredConsidered*minimum 100*Pure Science, Math, and Foreign Language highly desired
Boston UniversityBoston, MassachusettsRequired, Essay OptionalOptionalminimum 90*Accelerated Medical Programs requires Math 2, Chemistry, and Foreign Language
Bowdoin CollegeBrunswick, MaineOptionalOptionalminimum 100
Brandeis UniversityWaltham, MassachusettsOptionalOptionalminimum 100
Brown UniversityProvidence, Rhode IslandRequired2 Recommended*minimum 100*PLME program requires 2 SAT Subject test, and 1 must be Biology, Chemistry, or Physics
Bryn Mawr CollegeBryn Mawr, PennsylvaniaOptional for U.S. and Puerto RicoConsideredminimum 100
Bucknell UniversityLewisburg, PennsylvaniaRequiredRecommendedminimum 100
California Institute of TechnologyPasadena, CaliforniaRequired, Essay Optional2 Required*minimum 110Biology, Chemistry or Physics AND Math 2
California Polytechnic San Luis ObispoSan Luis Obispo, CaliforniaRequiredUseful for STEM majorsminimum 80
California Polytechnic PomonaPomona, CaliforniaRequiredOptionalminimum 71
Cambridge UniversityCambridge, ENGLANDRequiredOptionalminimum 1105 AP test with scores of 5 required
Carnegie Mellon UniversityPittsburgh, PennsylvaniaRequiredRequired*minimum 102*Science, Computer Science, and Engineering majors - Math 2 and 1 Science; Other Majors - Math 2 and 1 Other Subject
Case Western Reserve UniversityCleveland, OhioRequired, Essay OptionalOptionalminimum 90
CUNY BaruchNew York, New YorkRequiredOptionalminimum 80
CUNY HunterNew York, New YorkRequiredOptionalYes, no minimum
CUNY Macauley HonorsNew York, New YorkRequiredOptionalYes, no minimum
CUNY QueensFlushing, New YorkRequiredConsideredYes, no minimum
CUNY Sophie DavisNew York, New YorkRequiredOptionalInternational students not eligible
Claremont McKenna CollegeClaremont, CaliforniaRequired, No EssayConsideredminimum 100
Clark UniversityWorcester, MassachusettsOptionalOptionalminimum 85
Colby CollegeWaterville, MaineRequired2 Required*Yes, no minimum
Colgate UniversityHamilton, New YorkRequiredOptionalYes, no minimum
Columbia UniversityNew York, New YorkRequiredConsideredminimum 100
Cornell UniversityIthaca, New YorkRequiredRequired/Optional*minimum 100*Arts & Sciences: 2 SAT Subjects required; Engineering: SAT Subject optional
Dartmouth CollegeHanover, New HampshireRequired2 Recommendedminimum 100
Drew UniversityMadison, New JerseyOptional*Consideredminimum 80*SAT/ACT scores required for merit scholarships
Drexel UniversityPhiladelphia, PennsylvaniaRequired, No Essay2 Required*minimum 100*SAT Subject: 1 Math/Science; 1 Humanities (Not required for the ACT)
Duke UniversityDurham, North CarolinaRequired2 Required*minimum 90*English: Must take Math 2; any 2 SAT Subjects for all applicants sending SAT
Emory UniversityAtlanta, GeorgiaRequiredRecommendedminimum 95
Florida State UniversityTallahassee, FloridaRequired, No EssayOptionalminimum 80
Fordham UniversityNew York, New YorkRequiredConsideredminimum 90
Franklin Olin College of EngineeringNeedham, MassachusettsRequired, Essay OptionalConsideredOptional
George Mason UniversityFairfax, VirginiaRequiredConsideredminimum 80
George Washington UniversityWashington, D.C.Optional*Consideredminimum 90*BA/MD applicants: SAT/ACT and SAT Subject in Math and Science Required
Georgetown UniversityWashington, D.C.Reqired3 recommendedminimum 100
Georgia Institute of TechnologyAtlanta, GeorgiaRequiredOptionalminimum 90
Hamilton CollegeClinton, New YorkRequired, Essay Optional3 Required*minimum 100*or 3 Advanced Placement test required. SAT Subject or AP test must included 1 Math/Science and 1 English
Harvard UniversityCambridge, MassachusettsRequired2 Requiredminimum 100AP scores are optional
Harvey Mudd CollegeClaremont, CaliforniaRequired, Essay Optional2 Required*minimum 100*must take Math 2 and 1 other SAT Subject
College of the Holy CrossWorcester, MassachusettsOptionalOptionalminimum 100
Haverford CollegeHaverford, PennsylvaniaRequiredConsideredminimum 100
Imperial CollegeLondon, ENGLANDNoNominimum 1004 AP tests with scores of 5 required
Indiana UniversityBloomington, IndianaRequiredConsideredminimum 79
Ithaca CollegeIthaca, New YorkOptionalOptionalminimum 80
Johns Hopkins UniversityBaltimore, MarylandRequired, Essay OptionalConsideredminimum 100
Johnson & Wales UniversityProvidence, Rhode IslandRecommendedConsideredminimum 75
Julliard School of MusicNew York, New YorkNoNoYes, no minimum
Lafayette CollegeEaston, PennsylvaniaRequiredRecommendedminimum 95
Lehigh UniversityBethlehem, PennsylvaniaRequiredRecommendedminimum 79
Les RochesBluche, SWITZERLANDOptionalNominimum 70
London School of EconomicsLondon, ENGLANDNoNominimum 1075 AP tests with scores of 5 rquired
Loyola University of MarylandBaltimore, MarylandOptional*Optionalminimum 79*in lieu of SAT/ACT, you can send 1 additional teacher's recommendation or 1 additional essay
Marist CollegePoughkeepsie, New YorkOptional*Optionalminimum 79*H.E.O.P. students must submit SAT/ACT
Maryland Institute College of ArtsBaltimore, MarylandRequired, ACT essay RecommendedOptionalminimum 80
Massachusetts Institute of TechnologyCambridge, MassachusettsRequired, Essay Optional2 Required*minimum 90*1 Math and 1 Science required
McGill UniversityMontreal, CANADARequired2 Requiredminimum 100
Middlebury CollegeMiddlebury, VermontRequired3 subject test instead of the SAT/ACT*minimum 109*If student opts for 3 SAT Subject tests instead of SAT or ACT, they must take test in 3 distinct subjects
Mount Holyoke CollegeSouth Hadley, MassachusettsOptionalOptionalminimum 100
Muhlenberg CollegeAllentown, PennsylvaniaOptional*Optionalminimum 80*SAT/ACT required for merit scholarships or honors programs
New York UniversityNew York, New YorkRequired3 subject test instead of the SAT/ACT*minimum 100*or 3 AP or IB tests
Northeastern UniversityBoston, MassachusettsRequiredOptionalminimum 79
University of Notre DameNotre Dame, IllinoisRequiredConsidered*minimum 80*Subject scores used in course level placement
Northwestern UniversityEvanston, IllinoisRequiredConsidered*minimum 95*HPME & ISP programs requires Math 2 and Chemistry
Oberlin CollegeOberlin, OhioRequired, Essay OptionalConsideredminimum 60
Occidental UniversityLos Angeles, CaliforniaRequired, Essay OptionalConsideredminimum 100
Oxford UniversityOxford, ENGLANDNoNominimum 110Admission exam given at British Consulate, NY, NY
Pace UniversityNew York, New YorkRequiredOptionalminimum 80
Parsons School of DesignNew York, New YorkOptionalOptionalminimum 92
Pennsylvania State UniversityUniversity Park, PennsylvaniaRequiredOptionalminimum 80
Pepperdine UniversityMalibu, CaliforniaRequired, No EssayOptionalminimum 80
Pitzer CollegeClaremont, CaliforniaOptionalOptionalminimum 100
Pomona CollegeClaremont, CaliforniaRequired, Essay OptionalConsideredminimum 100
Pratt InstituteBrooklyn, New YorkRequired, Essay OptionalRequired/Considered*minimum 79*Math 2 required for Architecture majors
Princeton UniversityPrinceton, New JerseyRequired2 Recommendedminimum 108
Purdue UniversityWest Lafayette, IndianaRequiredOptionalminimum 80
Reed CollegePortland, OregonRequiredConsideredminimum 110AP scores considered
Rensselaer Institute of TechnologyTroy, New YorkRequired, Essay Optional*Required/Considered*minimum 88Accelerated Law & Medical require the SAT or ACT Essay, 1 SAT Math and 1 SAT Science subject test
Rice UniversityHouston, TexasRequired2 Required*minimum 100*2 SAT Subjects that are related to area of study
Rochester Institute of TechnologyRochester, New YorkRequiredOptionalminimum 79
Rowan UniversityGlassboro, New JerseyRequiredOptionalminimum 70
Rutgers UniversityNew Brunswick, New JerseyRequiredOptionalminimum 79
St. John's UniversityQueens, New YorkOptional*Optionalminimum 79*SAT/ACT required for scholarship applicants
Santa Clara UniversitySanta Clara, UniversityRequired, Essay OptionalOptionalminimum 90
School of Visual ArtsNew York, New YorkRequiredOptionalminimum 80
Scripps CollegeClaremont, CaliforniaRequiredOptionalminimum 100
Seton Hall UniversitySouth Orange, New JerseyRequiredOptionalminimum 79
Skidmore CollegeSaratoga Springs, New YorkOptional*Required/Considered*minimum 96*SAT/ACT and SAT Subject required for Presidential Scholar applicants
Smith CollegeNorthampton, MassachusettsOptional*Consideredminimum 90*SAT/ACT required for all international students
Stanford UniversityPalo Alto, CaliforniaRequiredOptionalOptionalAP scores recommended
SUNY BinghamtonBinghamton, New YorkRequiredOptionalminimum 90
SUNY Stony BrookStony Brook, New YorkRequiredOptionalminimum 90
Stevens Institute of TechnologyHoboken, New JerseyRequiredRequired/Optional*minimum 80*Accelerated Medical Program requires Math and Biology/Chemistry
Swarthmore CollegeSwarthmore, PennsylvaniaRequiredRequired/Considered*Recommended*Engineering department requires Math 2
Syracuse UniversitySyracuse, New YorkRequired, Essay OptionalOptionalminimum 100
Tufts UniversityMedford, MassachusettsRequired, Essay Optional2 Required*minimum 90*Engineering and Sciences requires Math and Physics/Chemisty
Tulane UniversityNew Orleans, LouisianaRequired, Essay OptionalOptionalminimum 80
The College of New JerseyEwing Township, New Jersey*RequiredOptionalminimum 80*SAT/ACT optional for Art or Music applicants
Union CollegeSchenectady, New YorkRequired/Optional*Required/Optional*minimum 70*Accelerated Medical requires SAT/ACT and SAT Math and Science. Law program requires SAT/ACT with essay
U.S. Air Force AcademyColorado Springs, ColoradoRequiredOptionalU.S. citizens only
U.S. Military AcademyWest Point, New YorkRequiredOptionalU.S. citizens only
U.S. Naval AcademyAnnapolis, MarylandRequiredOptionalU.S. citizens only
University CollegeLondon, ENGLANDRequired2 Required*minimum 109*5 AP tests required or 3 AP tests and 2 Subject tests
University of ArizonaTucson, ArizonaRequired/Optional*Optionalminimum 70*SAT/ACT required for merit scholarships and Honors, Architecture, Nursing, and Engineering programs
University of California, BerkeleyBerkeley, CaliforniaRequiredRecommendedminimum 90
University of California, DavisDavis, CaliforniaRequired with EssayConsideredminimum 80
University of California, IrvineIrvine, CaliforniaRequired with EssayRecommendedminimum 80
University of California, Los AngelesLos Angeles, CaliforniaRequired with EssayRequired/Considered*minimum 87*Engineering and Sciences requires SAT Math and Science
University of California, San DiegoSan Diego, CaliforniaRequired with Essay2 Recommended*minimum 83Engineering and Sciences requires SAT Math 2 and Science related to major
University of California, Santa BarbaraSanta Barbara, CaliforniaRequired with EssayRequired/Recommended*minimum 83*Engineering and Sciences requires SAT Math 2 and Science related to major
University of California, Santa CruzSanta Cruz, CaliforniaRequired with EssayConsideredminimum 80
University of ChicagoChicago, IllinoisOptionalConsideredminimum 104
University of ConnecticutStorrs, ConnecticutRequiredOptionalminimum 79
University of DelawareNewark, DelawareRequiredConsideredminimum 104
University of EssexEssex, ENGLANDRequiredNoN/A3 AP tests with a 3+ score on 2 tests and a 4+ score on 1 test required
University of ExeterExeter, ENGLANDACT only requiredRequired*N/A3 AP tests with scores of 5 required or 3 SAT Subjects with a 700+ score
University of IllinoisUrbana Champaign, IllinoisRequiredConsideredminimum 96
University of MarylandCollege Park, MarylandRequired, Essay OptionalConsideredminimum 80
University of Massachusetts, AmherstAmherst, MassachusettsRequired, Essay OptionalOptionalminimum 80
University of Massachusetts, BostonBoston, MassachusettsOptional/Considered*Consideredminimum 80*Nursing program requires SAT/ACT
University of MiamiCoral Gables, FloridaRequired, No EssayOptionalminimum 80
University of MichiganAnn Arbor, MichiganRequiredConsideredminimum 100
University of North CarolinaChapel Hill, North CarolinaRequired, Essay OptionalRecommendedminimum 100
University of PennsylvaniaPhiladelphia, PennsylvaniaRequired2 Recommended/Considered*minimum 100*STEM and Nursing program requires SAT Chemistry. Engineering program requires SAT Math 2 and Physics. Business program requires SAT Math 2.
University of PittsburghPittsburgh, PennsylvaniaRequiredOptionalminimum 100
University of RichmondRichmond, VirginiaRequiredOptionalminimum 80
University of RochesterRochester, New YorkRequired2 Subject test instead of SAT/ACT*minimum 95*or 2 AP tests
University of Southern CaliforniaLos Angeles, CaliforniaRequiredRecommendedminimum 90
University of TexasAustin, TexasRequiredConsideredminimum 79
University of VirginiaCharlottesville, VirginiaRequired, No EssayOptionalminimum 90
University of WarwickWarwick, ENGLANDNoRequired*N/A*1 SAT Subject with 700+ score and 2 aP tests required or 3 AP tests with scores of 5 required
University of WashingtonSeattle, WashingtonRequiredOptionalminimum 92
University of WisconsinMadison, WisconsinRequiredOptionalminimum 95-105
Vanderbilt UniversityNashville, TennesseeRequiredConsideredminimum 88
Vassar CollegePoughkeepsie, New YorkRequired, Essay OptionalRecommended*minimum 100*SAT Subject in Foreign Language to fulfill proficiency requirement
Villanova UniversityVillanova, PennsylvaniaRequiedOptionalminimum 90
Virginia Polytechnic InstituteBlacksburg, VirginiaRequiredConsideredminimum 90
Wake Forest UniversityWinston Salem, North CarolinaOptional*Optional*minimum 100*This university actually refers to standardized tests as evil.
Washington & Lee UniversityLexington, VirginiaRequired, No EssayConsideredRecommended
Washington University in St. LouisSt. Louis, MissouriRequired, Essay OptionalConsideredminimum 90
Wellesley CollegeWellesley, MassachusettsRequired, Essay OptionalConsideredminimum 100
Wesleyan UniversityMiddletown, ConnecticutOptionalOptionalminimum 100
Wheaton CollegeNorton, MassachusettsOptionalOptionalminimum 90
College of William & MaryWilliamsburg, VirginiaRequired, Essay OptionalOptionalminimum 100
Williams CollegeWilliamstown, MassachusettsRequiredConsideredRecommended
Worcester Institute of TechnologyWorcester, MassachusettsOptionalOptionalminimum 84
Yale UniversityNew Haven, ConnecticutRequired, Essay Optional2 Recommendedminimum 100

How to Use this List

Now that you know what colleges require which test, it’s time to start preparing!

Explore our following courses:

Plus, for more expert guidance on navigating the complicated college admissions process, check out our College Counseling programs. These one-on-one consultation programs will walk you step by step through the entire college application process!

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Brigitte Chang

Brigitte Chang is Head College Counselor and oversees our College Admissions Counseling program. She is an expert on the college application process. Most of all, she knows exactly what admission officers are looking for in an applicant even at the most selective and competitive schools. She oversees all of our Road Map to College students to ensure they are on track to gaining entry to the perfect college.

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