Application Requirement Change

Beginning with applicants for Fall 2018, Olin College of Engineering will not require students to submit scores for the optional essay section of the SAT or the optional writing section of the ACT. We will continue to require either the SAT or the ACT as part of the application.

Our decision to no longer require writing scores with the standardized tests does not indicate a belief on our part that writing is unimportant. On the contrary, at Olin we believe that engineering starts with people and ends with people, which means that engineers must be good communicators and collaborators in addition to good problem-solvers. Strong oral and written communication skills are essential for success in the Olin curriculum, as well as in post-graduate life.

We are confident that through the Common Application essays and the written responses to the additional questions we ask on our Olin College Member Page, we have the evidence we need to make an accurate assessment of each applicant’s writing ability. In our review of a student’s transcript, we are as interested in their accomplishments in writing-intensive courses like English and Social Studies, as we are in their achievement in STEM subjects.  Finally, we review letters of recommendation carefully for further confirmation of an applicant’s communication skills.