Live Updates: Effects of COVID-19 on Standardized Testing

Live Updates: Effects of COVID-19 on Standardized Testing

Rachel on March 17, 2020

Magoosh will update this post as more information becomes available.
Latest update: May 8, 2020

As the Coronavirus (COVID-19) spreads across the globe, it has already impacted nearly all of our professional and personal plans.

To slow the spread of this pandemic, it is vital that we follow CDC guidelines and best practices. These include social distancing, which involves increasing the physical distance between people to a minimum of six feet.

This recommendation has led to the cancellation of many public events—including the administration of standardized tests.

So what should you do if you have a test coming up?

 

Table of Contents

 

Understanding the Effects of COVID-19 on Your Test

If you and your loved ones are doing well—and we certainly hope that this is the case—this might be a good time for you to fit in some extra studying. But don’t feel bad if you’re not in the position to do so right now—it’s important to take care of your physical and mental well-being first.

If you’re wondering what to do about the logistics of your exam, ask yourself the following questions:

  1. Was it canceled? If it was:
    • How do you get a refund?
    • How do you reschedule?
    • Can you take it at home?
  2. Was it postponed? If it was:
    • How do you reschedule?
  3. How does this affect application deadlines for college and grad school?

What is the status of your exam? Official Test-Maker Responses

  • To find out the latest on exam-wide cancellations and postponements, check the test-maker’s official response on their website:
  • To learn more about your already scheduled test, reach out to your testing center (if applicable).
  • To learn more about application deadlines and decision dates, reach out directly to university admissions departments (expect delayed responses).

What We Currently Know

SAT/ACT + AP Exams + College Admissions Updates

SAT

College Board has canceled the May SAT and, as of April 15th, the College Board has also canceled the June SAT. Registered students will be refunded. College Board is providing early access to registration for students who were registered for the June test, as well as for juniors who don’t have SAT scores.

If it’s safe to do so, College Board will provide monthly SAT exams starting in August and running through December 2020. However, if schools don’t reopen in the fall, College Board will offer a digital, at-home SAT exam—similar to the digital AP exams that students will take this spring.

>> Read / Watch: How to Handle SAT Test Cancelations Due to COVID-19

ACT

The ACT has rescheduled its April 4, 2020 test date for June 13th (for U.S. students) or June 12th or 13th (for international students). If you were registered for the April test date, you’ll receive an email about this change, as well as explanations for how to reschedule your exam for June or later. The ACT will also be held on July 18th.

>> Read / Watch: How to Handle ACT Test Cancelations Due to COVID-19

AP Exams

College Board is offering free AP classes online, as well as at-home AP Exams for students whose schools have been closed due to Coronavirus. Learn more here.

>> Read / Watch: What You Need To Know About At-Home AP Exams

College Admissions Updates

The National Association of College Admission Counseling (NACAC) created College Admission Status Update,” a database of colleges that changed their admission process due to COVID-19. Search by institution name for updates.

The University of California suspended SAT/ACT test requirements for 2021 applicants. This change applies to all nine campuses for one year only. We expect some other universities to follow suit. Please refer to specific university websites for updates.

>> Read: How COVID-19 Impacts College Admissions and Applications

>> Watch: How COVID-19 Affects College Admissions Requirements

GRE

Most GRE exams, including all computer-based GRE testing done by Prometric test centers, have been suspended around the globe. Check your email and GRE account online for specific information about your exam.

You can reschedule your GRE exam free of charge IF you reschedule via live chat, email (gre-info@ets.org), or phone (1-866-473-4373).If you reschedule by yourself online, you will incur a rescheduling fee (don’t do this!).

>> As of Monday, March 23rd, students can register to take the GRE General Test online at home. This is a temporary solution with limited availability. Find out if you’re eligible and register here.

Note that some programs are waiving GRE exam requirements for 2021 applicants. This isn’t widespread, so check with your specific program for updates.

>> Watch: GRE at Home: A Real Student’s Experience & Tips
>> Watch: ETS Online GRE: A Good Experience with Unexpected Surprises
>> Read: Was Your GRE Canceled? You Can Take It at Home
>> Read: A Student’s Guide to Taking the GRE Online with ProctorU
>> Read: Magoosh GRE Prep During COVID-19

GMAT

All GMAT exams at US and Canadian Pearson VUE centers have been suspended until further notice. If you have a GMAT scheduled outside of the US/Canada, you can check the status of your exam here.

If your exam has been affected, it will be either rescheduled or canceled, with fees waived. You will receive notifications via email, and the organization asks that you do not try to reschedule or cancel your appointment online but instead contact customer service.

>> As of April 14, 2020, registration is open for the GMAT Online Exam. Online test dates are available April 20th through June 15th. The Online GMAT Exam will not include an AWA section, but will otherwise have the same format, timing, and scoring as the traditional GMAT. Learn more here.

Note that some programs are waiving GMAT exam requirements for 2021 applicants. This isn’t widespread, so check with your specific program for updates.

>> Read: GMAT Canceled? You Can Take the GMAT Online Exam At Home
>> Watch: GMAT At Home: Real Experience and Tips
>> Read: Online GMAT Exam Experience and Tips

IELTS

To help students whose tests were canceled, IELTS Partners has introduced IELTS Indicator. IELTS Indicator is an online test created for students who want to take the IELTS. At this time, it is not a substitution for the IELTS, as it is not accepted at all institutions. Check out our IELTS Blog (especially the “Read” article linked below), where we’ll update with more information about IELTS Indicator as it comes in.

IELTS has announced that testing will continue in limited locations. They have an extensive list of areas where the exam is canceled, so be sure to check. Contact your local test center with questions.

If your exam is not suspended, you are able to bring in and wear a mask, hands should be washed upon arrival, test report forms will be received by mail, and IELTS partners are offering free support material for affected test takers.

>> Read: What to Do If Your IELTS Study Plans Have Been Disrupted Due to Coronavirus (COVID-19)

TOEFL

Most TOEFL exams have been canceled. Check both your email and your TOEFL account online for more information about your specific exam.

As of April 2, 2020, ETS is offering the TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition test. This TOEFL exam that is identical to the TOEFL iBT that you’d encounter at a testing center, but that can be taken at home using ProcturU.

This at-home test is available everywhere except Mainland China and Iran. Find out if you’re eligible to take the at-home TOEFL. If you are, you can register with ETS here.

>> Read: What to Do If Your TOEFL Study Plans Have Been Disrupted Due to Coronavirus (COVID-19)

LSAT

April 7, 2020 Update:
The April 2020 LSAT has been canceled. Students registered to take the April exam* will be automatically registered to take the LSAT-Flex. This is a new, remote-proctored, at-home LSAT exam that will be available in late May to those students who wish to take it. The exact date of the LSAT-Flex, plus instructions for test-takers, will be made available no later than April 17th.

*Note that when the March administration of the LSAT was canceled, students planning to take this test in the U.S., Canada, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands were automatically registered for the (canceled) exam on April 25.

If you do not wish to take the LSAT-Flex exam, follow these instructions to get a coupon towards a different LSAT test date. You must submit the form no later than April 15, 2020 at 11:59p.m. ET.

Additional Info:

  • If you were registered to take the March or April LSAT, you may review and restore your previously canceled LSAT scores.
  • If you need a different date or location, contact Candidate Services at LSACinfo@LSAC.org or 215.968.1001.

>> Read: What to do if your LSAT study plans have been disrupted due to coronavirus
>> Read: Taking the LSAT-Flex Exam: Online At-Home LSAT Testing
>> Read: LSAT-Flex Score Conversion Table (How to Predict Your LSAT Flex Score!)

MCAT

All MCAT test dates through May 21st have been canceled globally. If you are scheduled to take one of those exams, you will receive a cancellation email.

The AAMC has announced that they will be offering a shorter MCAT for the rest of 2020. This exam will be 5 hours and 45 minutes as opposed to the normal 7 and a half hours. They have also added three new test dates: June 28, September 27, and September 28. Registration will open on May 7, 2020; the system is currently down as the AAMC updates it.

AAMC has extended their “flexible rescheduling” policy through the end of May, which means that all rescheduling fees will be waived when you reschedule your April or May exam due to COVID-19.

>> Read: What to do if your MCAT study plans have been disrupted due to coronavirus
>> Read: Should I take the shortened MCAT in 2020?
>> Watch: Message to MCAT Students from an MCAT Expert re: Coronavirus (COVID-19) and Med School Admissions
>> Watch: Study With Me LIVE – MedKinza & Kat from Magoosh MCAT

 

Magoosh’s Response

Students with a Magoosh Account

If you are a current Magoosh student, we know that your studying plans may be disrupted. We are offering all of our existing students the option to pause or extend your Magoosh account free of charge. Please send a message to our team at help@magoosh.com if you’ve been impacted.

New Magoosh Students

Are you thinking of purchasing Magoosh prep but worried your standardized test will be affected due to the implications of Coronavirus?

After completing your purchase, email us at help@magoosh.com and we will pause or extend your Magoosh subscription plan for free.

Take Care

We wish everyone the best at this stressful time! Please take good care of yourselves, your loved ones, and your community.