OU to Adopt Test-Optional Admissions Policy for the Next Five Years

Mike Seals - September 22, 2020 11:35 pm

NORMAN, OKLA. – The University of Oklahoma will utilize a test-optional admissions process for the next five years, making OU the first public university in the state to adopt a multi-year test-optional undergraduate admissions policy.

The university has been authorized by the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education to implement the new policy through the 2025 admissions cycle, making the submission of common standardized tests, such as the ACT and SAT, optional for OU admission. The decision follows guidance issued in July by the State Regents that lifted the testing requirement for students applying to enter OU in the spring and fall 2021 semesters.

Since 2012, OU has utilized a holistic admissions process, which evaluates prospective students on four components: academic rigor and performance, activities and engagement, personal essay and letter(s) of recommendation. Holistic admission has allowed OU to use many factors to predict the likelihood of student success, and now the university can make admission decisions without relying on a test score.

“Looking to the future, we view operating as a test-optional institution as a necessary and important move to increasing access to the state’s flagship institution, and this pilot program allows for that consideration,” said Jeff Blahnik, senior associate vice president for the Division of Enrollment Management and executive director for the Office of Admissions and Recruitment. “Test scores can be a helpful tool in determining readiness, but they are not the only measure that projects that. Through our holistic admissions process, we are looking for proven academic excellence and for students who demonstrate grit, perseverance and a passion to make a positive impact on the world.”

Students are still encouraged to submit test scores, as they allow for accurate course placement, and in some cases could also improve a student’s opportunity to gain admission and scholarship. Test scores can also maximize scholarship opportunities, but OU will consider students for scholarships holistically as well.

The OU application for fall 2021 is now open at apply.ou.edu. To learn more about OU’s test-optional admissions process, click here. To connect with the Office of Admissions and Recruitment, please visit admissions.ou.edu.


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