Test Optional Admissions - University of Houston
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Freshman applicants have the option to apply for admission with or without a test score for the following academic terms: spring 2021, summer 2021, fall 2021, spring 2022, and summer 2022. So, what exactly does that mean? Learn more below.

What is test optional admission?

Typically, when applying to college, freshman students would be required to submit SAT and/or ACT scores with their application. These scores would usually be taken into account as colleges determine admission decisions.

However, due to the ongoing effects of COVID-19, the University of Houston has introduced test optional admission—students now have the choice to apply with or without these test scores.

3 Things You need to Know

01

You are not disadvantaged by applying without a test score. Please review your academic record and determine the best application option for you.

02

Only applicants who applied without a test score and are selected for individual review need to submit a resume and essay. This is determined by the assured admission requirements. We will let you know if we need these documents from you.

03

You can change how you are considered for admission after you submit your application. Just fill out the Admissions Review Option Change Form. If you already received a decision, however, you will not be able to change how you are considered for admission.

The Process

Applicants can apply for admission to the University of Houston through CommonApp or ApplyTexas. That's where you'll specify whether you want to apply with or without a test score. 

If applying with a test score:

Have your ACT or SAT score(s) sent directly from the testing agency to us.

University of Houston ACT Code:   4236
University of Houston SAT Code:  6870

To comply with Texas Success Initiative standards, scores may not be more than 5 years old at the time of submission.

If applying without a test score:

First, check the admission requirements for applicants without a test score to determine if your class rank and unweighted calculated GPA fall under the application type of Individual Review. You will be asked to submit the following additional materials only if you are selected for Individual Review: 

  1. Resume (include special talents, awards or honors earned, family responsibilities, leadership activities, part-time work experience, public service or volunteer work, and extra-curricular activities)
  2. Essay (pick one of the following topics)
    • Essay Option A: Some students have a background, identity, interest, or talent so meaningful they believe their application would be incomplete without it. If this sounds like you, please share your story. 1,000 words or less
    • Essay Option B: Tell us about a time where you challenged your pre-existing worldview. Why? Would you do this again? 1,000 words or less
    • Essay Option C: Tell us about a time where you had to either take a risk or stay safe. What did you do? What happened? Would you do it again? 1,000 words or less

 

Changed your mind? If you want to change how your application is reviewed (with or without a test score) fill out the Admissions Review Option Change Form. You cannot submit this request if you have already received an admissions decision.

Admission Requirements

Admission requirements are different if you choose to apply without a test score. The admission criteria for each choice is below.

WITH TEST SCORE
Class Rank SAT or ACT Admission Type
Top 10% No Minimum No Minimum Assured Admission
11 - 25% 1080 21 Assured Admission
26 - 50% or No Rank 1170 24 Assured Admission
51% and Lower —   —   Individual Review*

WITHOUT TEST SCORE
Class Rank Calculated Unweighted GPA** Admission Type
Top 10% No Minimum Assured Admission
11 - 25% 3.40 or higher Assured Admission
lower than 3.40  Individual Review*
26 - 50% or No Rank 3.45 or higher Assured Admission
lower than 3.45 Individual Review*
51% and Lower —  Individual Review*

*If you don’t meet the assured admissions requirements, we may consider additional factors in the admissions process. If we require additional documentation, we’ll request those materials from you.

 **This unweighted GPA will be calculated by the University of Houston (out of a 4.0 scale) using English, math, science, and social studies grades on your transcript. Extracurricular classes will not be included. 

 

Majors With Additional Requirements

Some majors have additional requirements on top of the ones listed above. For more information, visit uh.edu/freshman-majors-ar.

FAQs

  • Which option should I choose?

    Everyone’s situation is different, so we recommend reaching out to your recruitment specialist to see which option may be best for you. The great thing is, whatever option you choose, can be changed later. So, if you decide that you want to change from applying with test scores to without or vice versa, there’s a form that can be filled out on our website. Remember, you can only submit this form if you have not received an admissions decision yet.

  • Will I be less likely to be admitted if I apply without a test score?

    Not at all! You’re not penalized in any way for choosing to apply without a test score. Just keep our assured admission criteria in mind.

  • If I choose to apply without a test score, what other documents will I need?

    It depends. If you meet the assured admissions criteria, we won’t need anything other than your official transcript. If you don’t, we’ll individually review your file. For that, we’ll need a resume and a personal statement. We’ll let you know if we need those documents.

  • I already applied without a test score, but now I wish I had applied with a test score instead. Can I change how my application is reviewed?

    Yes. If you have already submitted an application, but would like to change how you'll be considered for admission (with or without a test score), please complete the Admissions Review Option Change form. You can only submit this form if you have not received an admissions decision yet.
  • If I choose to apply without a test score, will I still be eligible for scholarships?

    Yes! Students who apply without test scores are still eligible for scholarships and will be reviewed by our Office of Scholarships & Financial Aid for our merit scholarships.