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The National Center for Fair and Open Testing ( places a special emphasis on eliminating the racial, class, gender, and cultural barriers to equal opportunity posed by standardized tests. Hundreds of four-year colleges and universities across the United States admit a substantial number of students without regard to test scores. These colleges and universities acting on the belief that "test scores do not equal merit," do not use the SAT or ACT to make admissions decisions about a substantial number of their incoming freshmen classes. Test optional institutions are finding that by dropping tests leads to greater diversity because the focus on test scores deters otherwise qualified minority, low-income, first-generation, female and other students from applying; deemphasizing tests attracts more students who are academically capable; and high school performance -- expressed either as grades or class rank -- is the best available screening device for applicants. a current list of Test Optional higher educational institutions.

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