Applicant success belies SAT's value
Wake Forest freshmen are more high-caliber, diverse without test.
By Jane Stancill
for the Charlotte Observer
Across North Carolina and the nation, high school seniors are sweating their college applications and fretting about one number: their SAT score.
But not students aiming for Wake Forest University, which no longer requires students to submit the standardized test score. Wake Forest was the first highly ranked research university to announce the move away from the SAT in 2008.
Since then, the university in Winston-Salem has become more racially and socio-economically diverse. Pell Grant recipients almost doubled. Students of color increased from 18 percent to nearly 23 percent.
Along the way, the university also noticed an uptick in the number of students with an exemplary high school track record, which, research shows, is the best predictor of college success. The percentage of Wake Forest first-year students who graduated in the top 10 percent of their high school classes grew from 65 percent in 2008 to 83 percent last fall.