How Important are SAT Scores for Ivy League University Admissions?

How Important are SAT Scores for Ivy League University Admissions?

As Ivy League and other prestigious universities reinstate SAT requirements after relaxing the rules during COVID, it’s vital to start preparing early for fiercely competitive university applications. 

During and directly after the COVID-19 pandemic, many university admissions departments - including Yale, Brown, Dartmouth and MIT - temporarily relaxed their SAT requirements. Test-optional policies were adopted in recognition of the fact that it was difficult for all students to sit for standardized tests safely. 

But universities are starting to dispense with their test-optional admissions rules, explaining that the need for a standardized test is important to ensure consistency when comparing applications from a range of educational backgrounds. 

The University of Texas stated due to an abundance of 4.0 GPA the SAT score is “a proven differentiator”, so it’s clear that universities across the US are returning to a system that prioritizes SAT scores and other indicators of personal and academic success that can set students apart from others with similar GPAs.

Good SAT scores are important, but so is ‘sparkle’ 

High-quality private tutoring, personalized to an individual student’s strengths and learning style, can make an enormous difference to SAT results. 

Nathaniel Hannan, US Client Relationship Manager at Tutors International, has successfully tutored many students through their SATs:

“Students perform best on standardized tests when they are well-prepared through tutoring. Over a decade, I have routinely helped students elevate their scores from the 50-60th percentile range to the 99th percentile.”

With a focused preparation strategy, a tutor can work with the student to achieve their academic and personal goals. With fierce competition for Ivy League places, it’s not just SAT scores that will determine acceptance. As a trusted mentor and educator, engaging a private tutor early on will ensure you’re focused on the things that will impress admissions officers. 

As our founder, Adam Caller, has said before:

“The majority of enquiries we’ve received have been from parents who are just not happy with the standard of education in school. They want their children to go to Oxford University or Harvard, and to compete with kids in the UK, the US and in other countries. Those children need that extra ‘sparkle’ – that added ‘something’ that puts them ahead of the majority of their peers.”

We know that students are thriving in a non-traditional learning environment, achieving exceptional results. The one-to-one attention and individualized curriculum allows students to work at their own pace, in a comfortable environment, and offers them the ability to explore and focus on their own academic and extra-curricular interests without the pressures of the classroom.

More families every year are choosing to educate their children outside of the traditional classroom environment for a variety of different reasons, from special educational needs to family, work, and travel commitments. We operate all over the world to provide families with exceptional private tutors, who are perfectly matched to their individual needs.

So, if you’re worried that your child may not achieve the SAT scores they need, or are struggling in a traditional school environment, or would benefit from support from a private tutor with an Ivy League background, you should get in touch as soon as possible. A preliminary enquiry can answer any pressing questions so you can be better informed about home tuition and how we can help.

From experience, we know families tend to deliberate for a length of time about what kind of tutoring they want, in what capacity, and if they want it at all. Contact us in the deliberation stage, rather than at the critical moment when your child needs a full-time private tutor imminently. Whatever it is, we can probably help, but if you’re considering private residential tuition, talk to us now so that we have the time to design the very best personalized learning program for your child.

We recognize the privileged position our Clients hold, and the challenges faced by lower income families, and so we created the Tutors International Mentorship Program. If you know an exceptional student who would benefit from our help, encourage them to apply! 


  • Tutors International provides an unparalleled tutoring service that matches the right tutor with the right child, in order for the student to fully reach their personal potential and academic excellence.
  • Providing a service for children of all ages at different points in their educational journeys, Tutors International is a reputable tutoring company founded on a commitment to finding the perfect tutor to realise the specific goals and aspirations of each student.
  • Private Tutors are available for residential full-time positions, after-school assistance, and homeschooling.
  • Founded in 1999 by Adam Caller, Tutors International is a private company based in Oxford, a city renowned for academic excellence. Our select clientele receives a personally tailored service, with discretion and confidentiality guaranteed.

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