Test-Optional - Admissions | University of Pittsburgh


The University of Pittsburgh’s decision to go test-optional for Fall 2021 was to ensure that no student is denied the opportunity to be considered for admission, particularly in light of ongoing challenges with access to SAT and ACT test centers. Students applying for admission to any major in the Kenneth P. Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences, College of Business Administration, Swanson School of Engineering, or School of Computing and Information for the Fall of 2021 will have the option to not include their SAT or ACT scores as part of the application submission. School of Nursing students may be considered on a case by case basis. All applicants to the University of Pittsburgh receive a comprehensive individual review; admission is not based on a single factor. In the absence of SAT or ACT test scores, the committee will determine admissibility by relying more heavily on other admissions factors. The University of Pittsburgh Bradford, Titusville, Greensburg, and Johnstown campuses also have a test-optional policy for Fall 2021.

Please Note: Once a student has made the decision to submit a test-optional application, or provide test scores, that decision cannot be changed. Students who are unsure of the choice that’s right for them should reference the class profile to evaluate their decision.

Should I apply test-optional?

For students with SAT/ACT scores, how they wish to present themselves to the Admissions Committee should be a personal decision. If a student does not consider their test results to be an accurate reflection of their past academic performance and future academic potential, the student may want to apply test-optional. Subsequently, students with SAT/ACT results they believe add to their overall academic portfolio are invited to submit those scores.

Holistic Review Factors
  1. Strength of Student's Academic Coursework
    Enrollment Service Managers will take into account students' grade trends and senior year curriculum choices.

  2. Performance in Advanced Courses
    In addition to grade trends, applications will be reviewed for honors, Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate, post-secondary coursework.

  3. Short Answer Questions
    As all applications are individually reviewed, students can take the opportunity to highlight their application in this section.

  4. Extracurricular Activities
    Extracurricular activities and anything else that a student chooses to submit in order to demonstrate their academic potential.

  5. Personal Statement
    Students electing to be reviewed for admission without SAT or ACT test scores are encouraged to submit a Personal Statement.

  6. Supplemental Documents
    While not required, you may submit letters of recommendation and/or a resume.

Although the University of Pittsburgh is on a rolling admissions schedule, it is to your advantage to apply early. This will increase your chances for admission in our competitive applicant pool. Please be mindful of deadlines for scholarships, graduate school guarantees within the Guaranteed Admissions Programs, and Pitt Honors.

Students are the curators of their own life stories. As such, applicants are welcome to submit anything that helps tell their story—being mindful and thoughtful about the quantity and quality of information shared.” — Kellie Kane, Associate Vice Provost for Enrollment and Executive Director of Admissions