Ball State University is making submitting SAT or ACT scores optional for prospective students, beginning with next year’s fall class. The school says the change is aimed at attracting more students and increasing diversity and graduation rates.
The university began looking at changing its admissions process in the spring of 2017. Ball State says the goal is to bring in more students likely to be successful in school and in life. President Geoffrey Mearns says says high school grade point averages are the strongest predictor for student success, and believes the change will "create opportunities for even more high-achieving students to take advantage of our distinctive academic programs, our unique immersive learning experiences and our supportive campus community."
Ball State says the move comes on the heels of the welcoming the second-largest freshman class in its history last year. The school says it was also the most academically qualified and diverse freshman class in its history. Ball State says it is the largest four-year public university in Indiana to become test-optional.
“If students feel their SAT or ACT test scores don’t represent their academic abilities and decide not to submit them, we’ll holistically consider their academic work and difficulty, extracurricular participation, and any applicant statements or recommendations,” said Vice President for Student Affairs and Enrollment Services Kay Bales in a news release. “Our goal at Ball State is to lead students to have successful careers and meaningful lives. This starts by making college education a possibility for more qualified students.”