Test-optional admissions policy

UMSL is joining other universities in the University of Missouri System in extending a pilot program that suspends the standardized testing requirement for all first-time college students applying for admission through the fall of 2022. (Photo by August Jennewein)

First-time college students applying for admission to the University of Missouri–St. Louis will continue to have the choice of whether to submit their standardized test scores to the university through the fall 2022 semester.

UMSL is joining other University of Missouri System universities in extending a pilot program that suspends the standardized testing requirement for all first-time undergraduate applicants at a time when the COVID-19 pandemic continues to disrupt the availability of standardized tests nationwide.

UMSL, the University of Missouri–Columbia and Missouri University of Science and Technology launched the pilot program last summer. UMSL had previously implemented a test-optional admissions process for fall 2020 applicants as ACT and SAT exams were cancelled last spring.

“We are grateful we can eliminate a barrier for students who have had to endure so much over the past year to continue their educational journeys,” said Dixie Williams, UMSL’s interim associate vice chancellor for strategic enrollment and the director of admissions. “This decision eases the burden on applicants but in no way sacrifices our admissions standards.”

A student’s high school GPA has been shown to be the best predictor of success in college and will be a key factor in all admissions decisions. But admissions staff members will take a holistic approach to evaluate applicants, weighing factors such as coursework and a personal statement in conjunction with GPA.

More and more universities have announced test-optional policies for fall 2022 applicants.

Students applying to UMSL may still choose to submit ACT or SAT scores, and the admissions requirements and review process for those applicants will remain unchanged. But Williams said students who choose not to submit a standardized test score will not be at a disadvantage in the admissions process.

Students seeking more information on UMSL, the admissions process or who want to submit an application can visit the Office of Admissions at admissions.umsl.edu or call 1-314-516-5451 or 1-888-GO-2-UMSL.

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Steve Walentik

Steve Walentik

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