The University of Massachusetts Amherst
University of Massachusetts Amherst

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Test-Optional Information for International Students

At UMass Amherst, we are committed to reducing barriers caused by COVID-19 disruptions for students who plan to apply for admission. Therefore, beginning with the spring 2021 term, and continuing for each spring and fall term through spring 2023, we are making standardized tests optional for first-year entering applicants. 

For more information about the policy change, please visit our test-optional policy webpage.

Below are some frequently asked questions, specifically related to international students. If you have additional questions, please write to or call 413-545-0222. 

If I have official SAT/ACT scores and submit them, will they still be considered as a part of my application?

If you would like to have your official SAT/ ACT to be a part of your application to represent yourself, we will be happy to consider the scores as supplemental information. Keep in mind, your application is how you decide to represent yourself and your accomplishments. You should decide what information you would like to include or exclude and  that can demonstrate your ability and potential.

More information about how to submit your standardized test scores to UMass can be found here.

If I do not submit test scores, will I still be considered for merit scholarships and competitive programs?

International and out-of-state students are eligible for merit scholarships. UMass Amherst is proud to continue awarding students who present their strong and consistent academic performance even if you don’t submit test scores.

How will my application be reviewed if I do not submit a standardized test scores?

Standardized test scores are one of many factors that we take into consideration in the admissions process. We continue to evaluate each student's grades, rigorous courses, involvement in extracurricular activities, personal statement, letters of recommendation, and other achievements.

Will I have a good chance of being admitted into a competitive major if I don’t submit test scores?

The absence of test scores will not have impact on your chance of being admitted into a competitive major. There are many other areas in your application for you to provide evidence that you are a strong candidate for the major you desire.

How will my application be reviewed if I don't submit a SAT/ACT test score and I do not have a school-reported GPA due to the COVID-19 pandemic?

This will depend on the country you are from or the curriculum your school offers. In many cases we use the external exam results, such as CBSE, ICSE, IGCSE, AS, O Level, MYP, CXC, etc., in our GPA calculation rather than school transcript. Please email for more information if your grades have been impacted due to COVID-19.

How will this impact the Massachusetts Board of higher Education (MBHE) sliding scale for GPA/standardized test scores?

The MBHE sliding scale for GPA/standardized test scores has no impact on curricula outside the U.S.

What are the standardized testing requirements for international student applicants?

International applicants who apply to UMass Amherst as first-year applicants starting with spring 2021 entry and continuing through the spring 2023 admissions cycle are not required to submit the SAT/ACT test score. However, proof of English language proficiency is still required if English is not your first language and your high school is not following the American or British curriculum. You can access a checklist of the international first-year admission requirements, including the full list of English language tests we accept, here.