Standardized Testing Policy

Your standardized test scores are just one part of your application. We know that a standardized test may not be the best measure of your curiosity about the world, how hard you work to learn something difficult, or your ability to bring together people with vastly different points of view. At Swarthmore, we practice holistic and contextual admissions. This means that while we consider how you do on these tests—and hope you prepare for them the best you can—we do not make admissions decisions based on just one factor like a test score. Each piece of your application is important to us, including your standardized test scores, and also: the rigor of your curriculum; your extracurricular involvement and talent; your academic performance; your essays and written expression; your contributions to the classroom and your community; and your recommendation letters.

Required, Recommended, and Optional Tests

We require scores from either the SAT or the ACT. We do not require the optional essay section of the SAT or the optional writing section of the ACT. If you submit scores from those sections, they will not be considered in our application review. Scores from the old and the new SAT will be accepted—we give equal consideration to scores from either version. Swarthmore College superscores your SAT results. That is, we only consider the highest section scores submitted from multiple SAT test dates. Similarly, we only consider the highest section scores submitted from multiple ACT test dates, and the highest ACT composite score submitted.

We do not require you to take SAT Subject Tests, but we will be consider these scores if you submit them. If you have indicated an interest in our engineering program, you are encouraged to submit the Math 2 Subject Test.

If you are a non-U.S. citizen whose native language is not English, and/or you are studying in non-English language curricula, we strongly encourage you to submit results from the TOEFL or IELTS.

Submitting Test Scores

Please submit your scores to Swarthmore College directly from the testing agency. If sending official scores poses a financial hardship, please contact our office. Our testing codes are 2821 (College Board), 3722 (ACT), and 2821 (TOEFL).

To ensure standardized testing records are matched with an application for admission, please use your full legal name when registering for tests and when submitting an application.

Swarthmore College allows students to use Score Choice, a College Board option to submit select test scores. We also allow you to submit your ACT scores from the dates of your choosing. You are not required to submit all test scores to the College.