Harvard is taking bold steps to change the college admissions process by shifting focus from academic achievements to “to focus on meaningful ethical and intellectual engagement.” This is part of a two-year campaign by Harvard that consists of three major goals:
Promote more meaningful contributions to others, community service, and engagement with the public good.Assess students’ ethical engagement and contributions to others in ways that reflect varying types of family and community contributions across race, culture, and class.Redefine achievement in ways that both level the playing field for economically diverse students and reduce excessive achievement pressure.
What would this mean?
Students will be encouraged to engage in “meaningful, sustained community service.”Schools will assess student contributions – within their family, community, and the world (as applicable).Reduced importance of standardized tests.Increased importance in qualitative parts of application (essay, activity descriptions, etc.)Increased emphasis on student’s unique contributions, voice, and fit. Schools will assess students based on ethical and intellectual engagement.
Over 175 schools have endorsed or supported this mission. Stay tuned to see what happens when Harvard says “It’s time to say, “Enough.””
To learn more, see here: https://mcc.gse.harvard.edu/collegeadmissions