Pros, cons of UC system possibly dropping standardized test requirement

Aura Barrera/Staff

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Did y’all hear? As of late, there has been debate within the UC system around dropping the application requirement of standardized test results. No decision has been made, but it is under serious consideration.

Perhaps this may not matter for those of us who already had to take standardized tests such as the SAT and ACT to get into UC Berkeley. It was a requirement that we had to meet. We had to do it. Back in my time, the thought and act of taking standardized tests was something I dreaded, however. Personally, I was not good at taking those types of tests, and my performance was usually wack. For other peers of mine, standardized tests were a breeze and something that they found themselves good at. Taking a standardized test for them may have been easier because of the background and resources they had.

While this is something that we may not have to concern ourselves with anymore, I wonder how many of us would be pro taking standardized tests away and how many would be against it. If we were in high school again, what would we think of this decision?

The UC system dropping the standardized test results requirement is a tough decision to make, especially in recognizing that standardized test results have been a large factor in applying to universities for nearly a century. With any debate, there are pros and cons to consider before making a decision.

Fortunately, we at the Daily Clog have constructed a short hypothetical list stating the possible pros and cons of dropping standardized test results as an application requirement for the UC system.

Pros

Standardized test merit is devalued, which gives more value to grades, extracurriculars and the personal essay. More students may feel that they are eligible to apply to UC schools, therefore more students may apply. If a student is just applying to UC schools then they can save money on tutoring, prep books and the fee to take a standardized test.

Cons

Standardized test merit is devalued, which gives more value to grades, extracurriculars and the personal essay. More students may feel that they are eligible to apply to UC schools, so more students may apply. In this case, it is just the UC system dropping test result requirements, so depending on where students want to apply, they would still have to prepare for and take the test.

So, of the pros and cons mentioned, three out of four are the same. Depending on who you are, a pro can be seen as a con and a con can be seen as a pro. This is an incredibly subjective debate topic and requires deeper investigation. What happens to acceptance rates and demographics if standardized test results are no longer required? If the UC system dropped this application requirement, would it inspire other renowned universities in the country to do the same?

Having done well on standardized tests may make a student’s application more secure. Having done poorly on a standardized test may make a student and their application feel more insecure.

If standardized test results are no longer required, it may make some applicants feel more confident of their chances of getting in, or not as confident. It may also make the admission department’s job harder, but it could increase the diversity seen in a university.

Clearly, this is a subject-dependent debate. Where do you stand in this debate? Do you care considering that it may not be something you have to worry about anymore? Is this something we even need to think about?

Contact Gina Wright [email protected].