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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Admission standards should be regulated

    Applying to college takes forever. From filling out forms to mailing transcripts, getting into a university requires dedication and hard work. However, all students, whether domestic or from mainland China, need to face the same obstacles in order to be admitted fairly.

    According to The New York Times, “because the SAT is not given in mainland China, the (University of Washington) does not require international students to take it.”

    This is unfair because it eliminates a key hurdle in the admissions process for international students. According to the College Board’s website, “the SAT and SAT Subject Tests are a suite of tools designed to assess (one’s) academic readiness for college.”

    Most American students have to deal with the SATs, so students from mainland China should have to as well if they want to attend an American university. Admissions boards need to take into account an SAT score in every prospective student’s application. Just because international students have to pay out-of-state tuition and extra fees does not mean that they get out of taking the exams.

    Academic standards are different in every country, so basing admission on factors without the SAT is not an equal form of treatment between Chinese and domestic students.

    Taking the SATs is not the responsibility of the student, but instead those who require or waive such examinations. Many of the best and brightest from China come to the United States for the country’s higher education institutions. Those students should have an SAT score to determine what school is the best fit for them. Because academic standards are different for every nation, there needs to be an understanding between the international applicant and the university that the applicant needs to meet expectations set by American schools. If a student wants to leave China, he or she needs to be aware of the policies of the next place in which they want to study.

    In the same article, The New York Times reported that the University of Washington faced “rapid growth in international applications — to more than 6,000 this year from 1,541 in 2007, with China by far the largest source.”

    The increase in foreign admission at such a prominent Pac-12 university makes this SAT situation even more urgent. The University of Washington’s policy should not be adopted by other schools.

    Students from China need to take the SAT in order to figure out how they will do once they come to the United States. Applications are tough, but it is even tougher for both foreign and domestic applicants when the level of expectation is not clearly set by the admissions office. Students from all backgrounds should be able to apply to colleges with the assurance that the applicant pool is judged by the same standards across the board.

    There cannot be transparency in the admissions process if applicants are held to different requirements based on geographic location.

    — Megan Hurley is a journalism junior. She can be reached at or on Twitter via @WildcatOpinions.

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