The University of Oklahoma will not require prospective students to submit standardized test scores during the coming application season, the university announced Thursday.
While OU previously required undergraduate applicants to submit either SAT or ACT scores for consideration, the test score submission is now optional for students applying for spring or fall 2021.
OU administrators made the decision after the State Regents for Higher Education acknowledged Wednesday that the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted access to standardized testing. The board, which governs Oklahoma colleges and universities, provided the option for universities to offer more flexible admissions standards this year.
The university’s decision places OU among an ever-growing number of universities that are waiving or suspending standardized test score requirements, especially in light of the pandemic.
OU plans on returning to mostly in-person instruction next month. It is unclear the extent to which the pandemic has impacted OU’s enrollment this fall, as a university spokesperson declined to provide updated enrollment numbers Thursday.
According to OU, while students will still be encouraged to take the ACT or SAT and submit their scores if they can, the university will use a "holistic admissions process" that considers several other aspects of students’ academic performance and engagement. However, the university also noted Thursday that submitting test scores can increase students’ ability to receive scholarships and accurate class placements.
More details about OU’s admissions process, and the new guidelines are available on the university’s website. OU’s application window for fall 2021 opens Aug. 1.