Last month, the College Board, the organization responsible for the SAT and AP tests used in the college admission process, decided it will roll out a new “adversity score.” This score will be based off 31 factors that include the poverty and crime rates of the prospective student’s location. The point of this new score is to suggest that the higher adversity score a student receives, the better chances of admission they should have—even if their test scores would typically prohibit admission.
Just this month, Marquette University has become the latest college to jump ship with educational standards in the name of diversity. Marquette announced that its latest move will be to no longer require prospective students to submit their ACT or SAT scores. President Michael Lovell said, “Our Catholic, Jesuit mission calls on us to keep a Marquette education accessible to a diverse population of students.”
The irony in all of this is that, while Marquette and other schools are trying to be more diverse, they’re actually being prejudice in a sense by not requiring any expectations at all. Granted, the prospective student’s GPA will still be taken into account, but each high school has different grade distributions as well as grade inflation or deflation that makes it hard for colleges to uniformly assess an applicant’s academic ability. The SAT and ACT help alleviate the problem of accurately interpreting these differences by weeding potential students who are unprepared to compete at the higher educational level yet.
By replacing objective measurements for admission, Marquette and other schools are doing a potential disservice to themselves and their student body—all for the sake of being “woke.” Dropping out of college, but especially out of private colleges, is financially detrimental to the student. With Marquette University’s tuition being $43,350, that’s not a price to risk paying if you’re unequipped for academia at that level.
Instead of rewarding high academic achievement, Marquette is prioritizing other factors in their admission process. Dean of Undergraduate Admissions Brian Troyer said, “Students can decide how to best represent their capacity for success at the college level. We believe students are who they are because of their life experiences, work ethic, and their engagement in and out of the classroom.” Obviously, “life experiences” takes precedence over one’s actual academic achievements when it comes to being accepted into college, according to Troyer.
There is nothing wrong with using objective measurements in the admission process. In fact, it can be said that making moves towards test optional schools is prejudice. Dan O’Donnell said it best when he wrote, “It is prejudice of the hardest sort to base assumptions of intelligence, aptitude, and work ethic on demographic makeup.” We all want to see more students belonging to minority groups achieve great heights, but this recent move for colleges to go test-optional is just not the way to make this happen.
The views expressed in this article are the opinion of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Lone Conservative staff.