Test-Optional Policy

All students, both domestic and international, have the option to withhold testing as part of their application and decide for themselves whether they would like their standardized test scores used toward their admission candidacy. At Colorado College, students have never been treated as numbers — in either the admission process or the classroom — and this policy, implemented in 2019, strengthens that commitment. Our test-optional policy allows our team to identify the most qualified candidates for admission while also increasing access for first-generation, low-income, and traditionally underserved students.

The Office of Admission adheres to a holistic approach in their review of admission applications, carefully weighing both quantitative and qualitative measures of success and student potential. Each applicant's academic performance, their record of personal accomplishments, and the extent of their involvement and contribution to her or his community is taken into consideration during our comprehensive review and selection process.

CC's philosophy on submitting testing

We believe in empowering students to share information with us that best represents their academic abilities and potential. Standardized test scores are not required for admission. You can choose to opt-in to include SAT or ACT scores as part of your application. However, Colorado College does not penalize those who submit test scores and will only use them if they enhance your chances for admission. If you apply test-optional or submit scores that do not strengthen your application, we will place greater emphasis on your academic performance. Test scores, if submitted, are only part of a comprehensive, holistic review that also includes careful assessment of personal accomplishments, community involvement, and writing.

You may find it helpful to review this a short video about test-optional admission we produced as part of our App Advice series:

More Information

English Language Proficiency Exams for International Students:

Colorado College does not have an English Language Proficiency testing requirement for students whose native language is English or for students whose primary language of instruction has been English for the last three or more years.

If applying from a school where English is not the primary language of instruction, English is not your first language, and/or you are not an International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme (IBDP) student, applicants are strongly recommended to submit English proficiency scores from the Duolingo English Test (DET). If you need a fee waiver for the exam, please email admission@coloradocollege.edu.

In addition to the DET, we will also accept:

  • InitialView or Vericant interviews
  • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL)
    • iBT exam: recommended score of 100 or higher
    • ITP exam: students who submit these scores are strongly recommend to submit an IntialView or Vericant interview).
  • Pearson Test of English Academic (PTE): recommended score of 68 or higher
  • International English Language Testing System (IELTS): recommended score of 7.0 or higher

Colorado College considers the highest score from a single sitting of all English Proficiency exams. We have no minimum scores that would automatically eliminate an application; we provide these recommended scores as context for applicants. Please contact admission@coloradocollege.edu with questions and contact your college counselor for fee waivers for all English Proficiency exams except the DET.

Selecting a testing policy

Applicants will be prompted to select a testing policy on the main application (Common Application, QuestBridge Application, Apply Coalition powered by Scoir) or its supplement. The prompt will be:

Do you want your standardized test scores considered in the admission selection process?

  • Yes, I want my standardized test scores considered for admission
  • No, I do not want my standardized test scores considered for admission

If the applicant indicates that they "do not want" scores considered, the relevant sections of the application (test score dashboard, testing materials) will not be visible to application reviewers.

Test score reporting

The Admission Committee will continue to allow students to self-report standardized testing on the main application (Common Application, QuestBridge Application, Coalition Application). Self-reported test scores will NOT appear on the PDF preview of your application to Colorado College. Test scores reported on the Common Application are transmitted electronically to CC when you apply and added separately to your application file according to the preferred testing plan you select.

Additionally, you can email self-reported standardized test scores to admission@coloradocollege.edu. After you apply, you may also opt in and out of the testing policy by emailing us at this address as well.

The office requires official versions be submitted (via testing agency or secondary school) upon commitment to enroll.

Evaluation without test scores

The Admission Committee will closely consider applicants' academic preparation (grades, course selection, course rigor, counselor evaluation, teacher recommendations) as well as the personal statement, supplement responses, and school/community involvement.

There will not be a negative impact on the application evaluation due to the selection of the test-optional policy. Students who opt not to submit testing at time of application, the admission committee will not make any assumptions on that choice, and students will be given equal consideration in our holistic evaluation approach.

Evaluation with test scores

Many students believe their test scores accurately and positively reflect their academic abilities and give a more comprehensive view of achievement and potential. We will continue to evaluate all applicants, including those who choose to submit their test scores, in a holistic manner. We do not use an arbitrary cutoff point for admission consideration, and test scores are not the ultimate deciding factor in our process. They do, however, continue to be valued as a standardized measure which can provide helpful information to the Admission Committee.

Merit scholarship eligibility

All applicants will be considered for merit scholarships regardless of testing policy. Approximately five percent of our admitted students are awarded merit scholarships. These are released at the same time as the admission offer.


If the applicant has opted into test score consideration, we will review the best super-scored SAT. For the ACT, we do not super-score, but review the best ACT composite score.

Latest date to have scores considered

Early Action: October exam
Early Decision I: October exam
Early Decision II: December exam
Regular Decision: December exam

Institutional Codes

SAT 4072
ACT 0498
TOEFL 4072

Contact Us

Office of Admission

14 E. Cache La Poudre St.
Colorado Springs, CO 80903
Phone: (719) 389-6344
Fax: (719) 389-6816

Office of Financial Aid & Student Employment

14 E. Cache La Poudre St.
Colorado Springs, CO 80903
Phone: (719) 389-6651
Fax: (719) 389-6173

Report an issue - Last updated: 08/15/2023