Test Optional

Carroll College has gone Test Optional! This means that students can be admitted to the college and be awarded merit scholarships ranging from $15,000 to $20,000 without submitting an ACT or SAT test score. The admission decision will be based on the application materials including high school transcripts, essay, and letters of recommendation.

However, students are required to submit an ACT or SAT score if:

  • The student's unweighted academic GPA is below 3.0
    • Merit will be awarded based on unweighted GPA (not academic)
  • The student is homeschooled or attends a school that does not provide letter grades
  • The student wishes to apply for Direct Entry Nursing
  • *The student wishes to compete in intercollegiate athletics. *For the Class of 2020
    • Student-athlete, merit awards may be incorrect if they apply as Test Optional and submit test scores later. If a student is even considering playing, they should not submit a Test Optional application.

Applying Test Optional

Students can apply using either the Common Application or the Carroll College Application. On the Carroll College application, there is an option for Test Optional. If a student fills out the Common Application and wishes to be considered Test Optional, they should email that request to their admission counselor or admission@carroll.edu.  

Students will be informed of the admission decision and receive and initial merit award.

Calculating Final Merit Awards

Initial merit awards are calculated based on the information submitted during the process. Until May 1, students may choose to submit test scores if and when it helps them gain additional merit aid. Students should work with their admission counselor to ensure the correct test scores are reported.

Test Optional student merit awards are based on GPA and range from $20,000 per year for four years, to $15,000 per year for four years.

Merit levels with GPA and test scores can be calculated using the Merit Aid Calculator.

Submitting test scores after the admission decision

In some cases, if a student has taken the SAT or ACT we may request test scores after the student has been submitted for help in placing them in the appropriate levels of Math and English. Submitting these scores after admission will not affect Financial Aid or the admission decision.


We are happy to guide you through every step of the admission process. Contact your Admission Counselor or contact us at admission@carroll.edu, and we will make sure you get the information you need to make an informed college decision.