Standardized Testing for Transfer Applicants

Required Testing

Yale requires transfer 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 students are as follows:

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

Policies related to required testing:

  • 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.
  • The SAT Essay and ACT Writing sections are optional, but 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.
  • Scores from the March SAT or February ACT test dates should reach the admissions office in time for consideration of transfer applicants. 
  • Reporting: Transfer applicants 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: Applicants 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, applicants may use the “additional information” section to self-report additional test scores.
  • 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 focus on the highest ACT Composite from all test dates while also considering individual ACT subscores.
  • Applicants are not required to report results from exams completed prior to high school.
  • It is important for all students - but particularly important for international students - to register for tests with the same name that used on the application. The admissions office system will not link records to test scores if names do not match.

A Note to International Students

International students are required to submit SAT or ACT results unless they are studying outside the U.S. in a country without accessible testing centers (e.g. China and Iran). However, if you currently reside or attend school in a country where the ACT or the SAT is offered, you are required to take either test and submit official or self-reported test results to Yale. Note that because the ACT is less available outside of the U.S., the majority of international student students submit SAT results.

Testing for Non-Native English Speakers

Students at Yale must be able to express themselves fluently in spoken and written English. 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.


The Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), is offered in two formats and requires pre-registration for available testing dates. Yale’s most competitive applicants will have TOEFL scores of at least the following:

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

Please note that 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.

IELTS and Pearson Test of English

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

Duolingo English Test (DET)

Applicants may also 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, as long as they have Web access. Yale’s most competitive applicants will have DET scores of at least 120.


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