NACAC and International ACAC Urge Flexibility for Applicants Testing Outside the US

Media Contact:
Lindsay Addington

Arlington, VA (Oct. 23, 2019) - The College Board recently announced significant score cancellations from the Oct. 5, 2019 administrations in Egypt and Hong Kong due to issues related to test security. As a first step NACAC and International ACAC remind colleges and universities that these disruptions could significantly affect applications to your institutions for students who tested in these countries.

Short-Term Considerations

Considering upcoming application deadlines, NACAC and International ACAC urge colleges and universities that require or recommend standardized testing for admission or scholarships to consider the following points.

  • The delay in receiving scores, or score cancellations, from the Oct. 5 SAT may disrupt the college preparations of affected students, causing additional stress during an already demanding process.

  • The next international SAT administration takes place in December. There is no access to a November SAT date internationally.

  • Affected students are limited in their ability to re-take the test, or to travel to other locations to take the test, posing significant equity concerns.

What Colleges and Universities Can Do:

  1. Communicate with international counselors and prospective students to better understand the impacts of these testing changes, and to ensure that these difficulties have not discouraged students from applying to your institution, or meeting an earlier application deadline, such as early decision.
  1. Educate admission staff and application readers who are involved with international recruitment or application review about these disruptions. Ensure admission teams are aware that this test cancellation, and other testing changes and disruptions over the past year, resulted in international applicants having fewer testing opportunities than their peers in the United States.

Long-Term Considerations

Over the past several years, NACAC and International ACAC have been closely monitoring the disruptions to standardized testing that students who test outside of the United States face. The organizations have been working closely with the College Board and ACT to stay informed and share our members’ concerns.

NACAC and International ACAC remain respectful of the complexities involved with administering a test internationally. However, the mounting concerns about the ability of the testing agencies to manage a global testing network securely and equitably have prompted a deeper consideration of this environment. The NACAC board of directors created a task force on standardized admission testing for international and US students in response to a 2018 NACAC Assembly motion put forth by International ACAC delegates. The task force has been charged with carefully examining what the association sees as systemic challenges with standardized testing in an increasingly global landscape. Test security will be a major focus of the discussions.

If you would like to be in touch with NACAC’s testing task force, please email Lindsay Addington, director of global engagement, at

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