Yale has adopted a one-year test-optional policy for first-year applicants in the 2020-2021 admissions cycle and will not consider SAT Subject Tests. Review details below.

Close

Standardized Testing Requirements & Policies

Yale evaluates each applicant as an individual. Standardized test scores are just one of the many factors Yale considers when reviewing applications.

In response to the extraordinary circumstances associated with the COVID-19 pandemic, Yale is temporarily suspending its requirement that first-year applicants submit results from the ACT or SAT. The change will be in effect during the 2020-21 admissions cycle for first-year applicants who intend to matriculate in fall 2021. Applicants who are unable to complete an exam or who choose not to report exam scores will not be disadvantaged.

SAT Subject Tests will not be considered during the 2020-21 admissions cycle. See “Additional Exams” below for more information on these and other subject-specific exams.

When reviewing applications in the 2020-21 admissions cycle, the Committee expects that some applicants will have completed the ACT or SAT and received scores they feel reflect their academic strengths and college preparedness. Others may be disappointed in their performance but face barriers to registering or preparing for an additional exam date. And some students will simply be unable to complete any exam prior to the application deadline. Yale’s policy is designed to accommodate all high school seniors with a straightforward option: report ACT or SAT scores if you wish.

Review the full statement regarding Yale’s one-year test-optional admissions policy.

Transfer applicants and students who will apply to enroll in Fall 2022 or later should plan to complete the ACT or SAT by the appropriate deadlines, following the policies detailed blow.

Scroll down for more information about

  • Required testing and policies (for first-year applicants applying for fall 2022 and later)
  • Additional exams
  • Testing deadlines
  • Sharing official and self-reported scores
  • Testing for non-native English speakers

Required testing and policies (for first-year applicants applying for fall 2022 and later)

Yale requires applicants to report results from either the ACT or the SAT.

Standardized tests are just one component of a student’s application and are viewed within the context of the student’s entire file. There is no minimum score required for admission, nor is there a score that will guarantee admission. The middle 50% of test scores (the 25th to the 75th percentiles) for enrolled first-years are as follows:

  • SAT-Evidence-Based Reading and Writing: 720-770
  • SAT-Math: 730-790
  • ACT Composite: 33-35

Policies related to required testing:

  • SAT vs ACT: The Yale Admissions Committee does not prefer one test over the other, and students who submit both the SAT and ACT are not at an advantage.
  • Essay and Writing Sections: The ACT Essay and SAT Writing sections are optional. Applicants who opt to complete the Essay or Writing section should self-report their Essay or Writing subscore on the application (see below). Official score reports from the ACT or SAT will include the Essay or Writing subscore when applicable.
  • Self-Reporting Scores: First-year applicants applying for fall 2022 and later will satisfy Yale’s standardized testing requirement by self-reporting all ACT and/or SAT scores on the application and/or via the “Update Application” form, available on the Yale Admissions Status Portal after an application has been received. Applicants who are offered admission and choose to matriculate at Yale will be required to provide official results prior to enrolling. 
  • Multiple Tests & Test Dates: First-year applicants applying for fall 2022 and later who have taken the SAT or ACT exam multiple times should report all scores from whichever test they choose to report. Applicants who choose to report scores from both the SAT and ACT should report all scores received on both tests. If space in the testing section of the application is insufficient to self-report all SAT or ACT scores, applicants should use the “Update Application” form available via the Yale Admissions Status Portal to self-report additional scores after submitting an application. Applicants may also send all official scores directly to Yale via the testing agency. Yale’s CEEB code for the SAT is 3987; the ACT code is 0618. Applicants are not required to send scores taken prior to beginning high school. 
  • Superscoring: When assessing SAT results, admissions officers will focus on the highest individual section scores from all test dates. For example, if an applicant took the SAT twice, the highest Evidence-Based Reading and Writing and Math scores will be considered individually. When assessing ACT results, admissions officers will focus on the highest ACT Composite from all test dates while also considering individual ACT subscores.

Additional exams

In response to the global health crisis and the cancellation of several test administrations, the Admissions Committee will not consider SAT Subject Tests for first-year applicants during the 2020-21 admissions cycle (Class of 2025). Applicants to the Class of 2025 who have already completed one or more SAT Subject Tests should not self-report scores, and any scores sent to Yale will not be made available to the Admissions Committee. The tests will play no role of the evaluation process for first-year applicants during the 2020-21 admissions cycle. This policy will be reviewed and updated for future admissions cycles. 

Students who have completed AP Exams, IB Exams, or AICE Exams prior to submitting their applications may opt to self-report scores in the testing section of the Common Application, Coalition Application, or QuestBridge National College Match Application. Students who have completed any of these exams and who feel that their results demonstrate strength in specific academic areas may want to self-report those scores, but reporting them is entirely optional. As in other parts of the application, exam results will be considered as one component among many of a whole-person review process.

Students enrolled in IB and AICE curricula at the time they are offered admission are expected to have completed their exams and to submit final results prior to enrolling. An exception to this policy is in effect in spring and summer 2020. Read more about the Yale Admissions Office’s response to COVID-19

Testing deadlines

The last possible test dates are:

ACT

SAT

TOEFL

Single-Choice Early Action

October

October*

November

Regular Decision

February

December

January

QuestBridge National College Match

September

October

*SATs and SAT Subject Tests taken in November may also be available in time for consideration in Yale’s Single Choice Early Action program, but applicants should complete and submit Yale’s required standardized testing from previous test dates. For Single-Choice Early Action applicants who plan to take November SATs or SAT Subject Tests, admissions officers will begin the evaluation process with the official or self-reported scores already on file.

Sharing official and self-reported scores

First-year applicants applying for fall 2022 and later will satisfy Yale’s standardized testing requirements by self-reporting all ACT and/or SAT scores on the application and/or via the “Update Application” form, available on the Yale Admissions Status Portal after an application has been received. Applicants with self-reported testing that meets Yale’s requirements will see the checklist item for required standardized testing appear as “waived” on the Yale Admissions Status Portal. This means that Yale waives the requirement that applicants submit official scores from the testing agency for the purposes of evaluation. Applicants who are admitted and choose to enroll at Yale will be required to submit official score reports that match their self-reported scores prior to enrolling.

For first-year applicants applying for fall 2022 and later, if space in the testing section of the application is insufficient to self-report all SAT or ACT scores, applicants should use the “Update Application” form available on the Yale Admissions Status Portal to self-report additional scores after submitting an application. Applicants may also send all official scores directly to Yale via the testing agency. Yale’s CEEB code for the SAT is 3987; the ACT code is 0618.

Applicants who complete a standardized exam or receive a new exam score after submitting their application may use the “Update Application” form available on the Yale Admissions Status Portal to self-report new scores, or list Yale as an official score recipient either on or in advance of the test date.

Yale admissions staff may verify self-reported scores or scores submitted on a high school transcript with the appropriate testing agency or a high school official. Discrepancies between an applicant’s self-reported scores and official scores may result in the withdrawal of an offer of admission. 

Testing for non-native English speakers

Yale strongly recommends that non-native English-speakers who have not taken at least two years of secondary education where English is the medium of instruction take any one of the proficiency tests listed below.

Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL

The TOEFL requires pre-registration for available testing dates. Yale’s most competitive applicants have TOEFL scores of at least: 

  • 100 on the internet-based TOEFL
  • 25 on each of the three sections of the paper-and-pencil TOEFL Paper-delivered Test

Results from the November test (for Single-Choice Early Action) or the January test (for Regular Decision) may not arrive in time for the committee’s consideration. Be sure to include Yale’s CEEB code (3987) on all test registrations.

International English Language Testing System (IELTS) and Pearson Test of English (PTE)

The IELTS and PTE offer proficiency tests in locations around the world. Pre-registration is required. Yale’s most competitive applicants have IELTS scores of 7 or higher and Pearson Test scores of 70 or higher.

Duolingo English Test (DET)

Applicants may submit the Duolingo English Test (DET), which combines an English proficiency test with a brief video interview. Duolingo’s technology and format allows applicants to complete the test at any time or place with internet access. Yale’s most competitive applicants have DET scores of at least 120.

InitialView

InitialView provides live, unscripted video interviews that candidates may submit to colleges for consideration with other application materials. Interview times must be reserved in advance. There is no scoring associated with these interviews.