Applying Test Optional  

  • Ted Yoder ’12 works out some computations in the Hackman Physical Sciences Building, where he laid the groundwork for his current pursuit of a Ph.D. in physics at Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Students who do not believe their standardized test scores reflect their academic ability are welcome to apply to Franklin & Marshall test-optional. 

In order to use the Standardized Testing Option, students must indicate their intent to do so on their Common Application or Coalition Application. If you have already submitted your standardized test scores but would like to have them deleted from your transcript and application, you can tell us through your F&M Application Portal or contact us directly to request this change. 

Note to our home-schooled applicants

For home-schooled applicants, F&M is test-flexible, and therefore requires students to submit either their SAT or ACT scores. You may supply these test scores to us in a number of ways, including:

  • reporting them on your application
  • submitting test scores through the testing agencies
  • supplying us with copies of score reports via email
Note to our international applicants

For students whom English is a first language or who have been studying in an English speaking environment for at least 3 years, F&M does not require the TOEFL or IELTS, and is SAT/ACT optional. For students with fewer than three years of English instruction, F&M is test-flexible, and therefore requires language proficiency examination with the TOEFL or IELTS - these students may apply SAT/ACT optional, or may choose to submit their SAT/ACT. Please see the International Student Application page for more information

If You Choose to Submit SAT or ACT Scores....

You may choose to submit SAT or ACT test scores as part of the application process. If you do, F&M will "superscore" the results.  For the SAT, we combine the best evidence-based reading and writing score and the best math score received, even if they come from different test dates.  For the ACT, we take the highest Math, Science, Reading and English score from any tests a student takes, even if on multiple dates, and average them for a new ACT composite score.

If you choose to submit your SAT/ACT scores, you can do so in several ways. First, you may have your official results sent directly from The College Board (SAT) or the American College Test (ACT).  F&M's code number for each organization is listed below. Test scores will also be considered if they are listed on the official high school transcript; sent directly by an applicant's guidance or college counselor to the Office of Admission; or self-reported by the student on their Common/Coalition Application. 

PLEASE NOTE: Students who choose to self-report scores on the Common/Coalition Application and who later enroll at F&M are required to submit verified test scores at the time of their enrollment. 

  • F&M SAT code number: 2261

  • F&M ACT code number: 3574

F&M and the Redesigned SAT

The Facts

In 2016, The College Board made significant design and scoring changes to the SAT exam. Implementation of the redesigned test began with the rollout of the PSAT/NMSQT (Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test) in October 2015, with a full launch of the redesigned SAT in 2016.

The redesigned SAT scoring system consists of an overall composite score based on a scale of 400-1600. Additional section scores and subscores indicate performance in several academic areas. The essay portion of the redesigned SAT is now optional.

F&M's Policy on the Redesigned SAT

In response to the changes made by the College Board, Franklin & Marshall College accepted test scores taken in either SAT test format for all Class of 2017 and Class of 2018 high school graduates. It is expected that Class of 2019 high school graduates will take the test in its new format, with exceptions granted on a case-by-case basis. Applicants with special circumstances should contact the F&M Admission Office.

The essay section of the redesigned SAT will be optional as part of the F&M application process. 

What Has Stayed the Same

F&M has continued its policy of super-scoring the “section scores” of the SAT exam. However, the College does not superscore between the old and new SAT formats. 

It should also be noted that F&M continues to offer the Standardized Test Option. The ACT (American College Test) is also an alternative standardized test available to applicants, and is accepted interchangeably with the SAT.


F&M SAT Guideline Summary (2016-2019)


Class of 2017 HS Graduates

New or Old SAT Format


Class of 2018 HS Graduates

New or Old SAT Format


Class of 2019 HS Graduates

New SAT Format (contact us if you have special circumstances)

Transfer Applicants

New or Old SAT Format, if HS graduation date is 2018 or earlier


F&M will be as flexible as possible over the next few years with regard to our SAT policies, and we will adjust our policies based on the best available research regarding the overall effectiveness of the new SAT format. Any changes to our policies will be posted on our website in a timely manner.