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VCU Drops SAT Requirement for Some

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Virginia Commonwealth University says it will no longer require the SAT test for applicants who have a grade point average of 3.3 or higher.  Vice Provost Luke Schultheis  says the test appeared to be biased in favor of students whose parents had attended college, while those who were the first generation of a family to apply did worse.

Students who are first generation, on average, would have a 70-point lower score than students who were not first generation with the same GPA

On the other hand, a good grade point average – especially one that had risen steadily through high school – suggested a student was likely to succeed at college.

“We found that to be the single most reliable predictor of students success and we found the SAT to have no bearing on it whatsoever.” 

VCU says it will continue to consider honors courses, extra-curricular activities and leadership roles in high school – along with what Schulheis calls the grit factor – kids who did well in spite of difficult circumstances.  The school joins  ODU, Radford, Christopher Newport and George Mason in allowing good high school students to skip the SAT.

Sandy Hausman is Radio IQ's Charlottesville Bureau Chief