by Rebecca Schuman
"Bard College, a highly selective liberal-arts school in Annandale-on-Hudson, New York, is about to enter the second year of a revolutionary college-admissions experiment: four wickedly challenging essays, 2,500 words each, reviewed by Bard faculty (who, I assume, enjoy grading papers). All four essays get a B+ or higher? You’re in, period. No standardized test, no GPA, no CV inflated with disingenuous volunteer work. Last year, 41 students completed what the college is calling the Bard Entrance Exam—and 17 scored high enough to be admitted. This coming fall, that number may be substantially larger, as the country’s only true alternative application to an elite school gains publicity. I’m certainly doing my part to push it, because the idea is genius."