Exam requirement

Please note: Ongoing litigation related to the University of California’s admissions processes may affect some UC application materials. However, no matter what happens in the litigation, no applicants will be required to submit an SAT or ACT score for Fall 2021, and applications will not be viewed negatively based on the lack of a score. 

UC understands that there are real safety concerns about gathering to take a standardized test. The safety of applicants is more important to the University than any test score. 

Fall 2021 and fall 2022 enrollment

UC will be "test-optional" for fall 2021 and fall 2022. Freshman applicants are not required to submit SAT/ACT test scores. 

What does "test-optional" mean? 

  • You choose whether or not to submit SAT/ACT scores with your application.
  • If you are unable or choose not to submit test scores, your application will still receive full consideration. 

 SAT/ACT scores may be used for:

  • Admissions: Some campuses may choose to consider your test scores as part of their application review process. Remember, no admission decision is based on a single factor.
  • Scholarships. Some scholarships may include test scores as a factor in selection.
  • Determining eligibility for the statewide admissions guarantee. 
  • Course placement after you enroll.

Additional campus-specific information will be available this fall for the fall 2021 application cycle. 

Fall 2023 and fall 2024 enrollment 

Admission to the UC will be "test-blind" for applicants. 

What will “test-blind” mean? 

  • UC won't use your test scores to make admissions decisions.

SAT/ACT scores may be used for:

  • Scholarships. Some scholarships may include test scores as a factor in selection.
  • Determining eligibility for the statewide admissions guarantee. 
  • Course placement after you enroll.

International students

Some international student applicants will need to demonstrate English proficiency.

If you’ve completed all your secondary school/high school in a country where English was not the language of instruction, you're required to demonstrate English proficiency. However, even if you’ve had some secondary education in the U.S., you may still need to demonstrate English proficiency. 

Be sure to look at the international undergraduate admission section for more information about what you need to do and when.

Exam requirements FAQ 

Test scores are optional for fall 2021 and fall 2022. Can I apply without submitting test scores but choose to add my scores to my application later?

Yes. Test scores can be updated directly in the UC application after you’ve submitted the application, but they may not be considered if they’re added after January 1.
No. Between fall 2021 and fall 2022, the SAT/ACT test will be optional for all students, including nonresidents. For fall 2023 and fall 2024, UC will be test-blind for all students.
If you feel your test scores are an accurate reflection of your academic abilities and potential to succeed at UC, you are welcome to report your scores in the UC application. All applications will be considered fully, with or without test scores.
No. If you don’t submit test scores, your application will still receive full consideration for admission.
No. You complete a single application for all UC campuses. All information provided in the UC application is available to every campus you apply to.
UC no longer collects the essay/writing scores for the SAT/ACT tests. If you choose to report your test scores, you should report your highest total/composite score from a single sitting, but do not include the essay/writing score. If you are offered admission, you can submit your official essay/writing scores to your campus of choice. Certain scores may be high enough to meet UC’s Entry-Level Writing Requirement.