Standardized Tests

Regardless of your testing profile, your application will be given our full consideration through Caltech's holistic review method.

The following standardized test are required for a complete freshman application. We do not accept any substitutes for these tests.

  • SAT with Essay or ACT with Writing
  • SAT Subject Test in Mathematics Level 2
  • 1 SAT science subject test: biology (ecological), biology (molecular), chemistry, or physics

ALL required tests must be completed prior to the application deadline. If you are applying to meet our Early Action (November 1) deadline, then you may submit October test scores. If you are applying to meet our Regular Decision (January 3) deadline, then you may submit December test scores. If you are taking an exam shortly before your application deadline, we recommend that you add Caltech to the list of schools that will receive your score report as soon as it becomes available.

The Admissions Committee reserves the right to withdraw the applications of students who do not submit all of our required testing.

If you submit the SAT, Caltech requires the new/redesigned SAT (first offered in Spring 2016) with the essay portion.

Superscoring Policy

We strongly recommend that you send Caltech all of your available standardized test scores because the Admissions Committee will be certain to review the strongest score in each category, across all of the exam(s) you've taken. Caltech will superscore across SAT exam dates and across the same test version. Thus, if you took both the "old" and the "new" SAT, we will not superscore across those two different versions.

The ACT does not condone superscoring, so Caltech will not calculate a new composite ACT score; however, if you took the ACT multiple times, the Admissions Committee will take note of the differences in your score performances across sections.