Test-Optional Admission


Getting in without test scores

We understand that a standardized test is not the only predictor of academic success. That's why JBU's test-optional admission process provides you with a route to admission based on your writing ability, high school GPA and references.

Should I submit my test scores?

While JBU's admission process is test-optional, consideration of your ACT, SAT or CLT scores may benefit you. At the same time, submitting test scores to JBU will never negatively affect your application or financial aid. JBU will only consider your test scores if they benefit you.

Cases where test scores will benefit you

  • Your ACT, SAT or CLT superscore qualifies you for a better academic scholarship than your GPA.
  • You have between a 2.5 and 2.99 high school GPA and at least a 20 ACT, 1020 SAT or 66 CLT score and want to avoid submitting additional application materials.
  • You're an international student without a high school transcript from a U.S. school. In this case, test scores are required.

How do test scores affect academic scholarships?

JBU will consider your high school GPA and superscore for the ACT, SAT and CLT (should you submit them) to determine your eligibility for an academic scholarship. We will use the option that gives you the highest scholarship. Review JBU's academic scholarship criteria for more information.

What is the admission process like without test scores?

  • Complete the JBU application

    Start-to-finish, the application takes less than 15 minutes! When asked if you want JBU to consider your test scores, choose "no".

  • Submit your high school transcript

    Official high school transcript (required)

    Work with your high school to provide JBU with an official high school transcript that includes at least six semesters of grades.

    JBU prefers to receive transcripts electronically via:

    • Parchment (Naviance)
    • SCOIR
    • Slate.org
    • Overgrad
    • EDI files through the National Student Clearinghouse

    JBU will also accept transcripts sent via email to systems@jbu.edu or postal mail to:

    John Brown University
    Attn: Admissions Office
    2000 W University St
    Siloam Springs, AR 72761

    Final official transcripts must be submitted upon completion of high school.

    Note: Home-educated students and international students have special requirements for high school transcripts.

  • Submit other materials as requested

    If your GPA is lower than 3.0, we will request additional materials. You will be notified of these requirements in your applicant portal. If have at least a 20 ACT, 1020 SAT or 66 CLT and choose to submit your scores, you will be offered assured admission. Otherwise, you will be considered for admission based on your GPA, writing sample and references.

  • Get your admission decision in as little as three business days!

    In most cases, you'll receive an admission decision and your academic scholarship award within three days of completing your application!

Frequently asked questions

Can international students apply without test scores?

International students with a transcript from a high school that is accredited in the U.S may qualify for admission without submitting test scores. Please contact the admissions counselor for international students for more information.

I was admitted without test scores. Why am I being asked to submit them?
Even though the admission process is test-optional, JBU still needs your test scores to place you in appropriate classes and to calculate the class profile. If you have taken the ACT, SAT or CLT, please upload your scores as requested. Your scores will not negatively affect you in any way.

I was admitted without test scores. Can I keep taking the SAT/ACT/CLT to get a higher scholarship?

Yes and no. You may add test scores to your application file up until you accept your financial aid offer. Once you have accepted your offer, JBU will not review test scores added to your file.

I'm applying without test scores. What kind of financial aid am I eligible for?

If you apply without test scores, you may be eligible to receive academic scholarships, need-based scholarships, work-study, and federal loans and grants. The FAFSA is required to receive need-based aid, work-study, and federal financial aid.  Please see JBU's scholarship page for more information.

If I am admitted without test scores, will I have to take placement tests?

In order to place you in appropriate math and English courses, JBU needs a standardized test score to review. If you want to be considered for admission and financial aid without test scores, you may still submit test scores to satisfy the course placement requirement without them influencing your admission decision or financial aid. If you do not submit any test scores, JBU will require you to take placement tests in English and math.