Application Materials

Everything listed below is required for a complete application, unless otherwise noted. In addition to these materials, we require an interview

Gateway, Part 1: Candidate Profile

Begin by filling out your Candidate Profile. This profile contains your basic personal information and is shared with Exeter and other schools using Gateway.


Important Update: Exeter will be test optional for applicants for fall 2022. While we encourage students to submit standardized testing as part of their application whenever possible, we recognize that pandemic conditions may make it difficult for some to take a standardized test. As always, admission decisions are made holistically with a full and equal review of all submitted materials.

If you submit test scores, please follow these guidelines:

School Codes: ISEE 300185; SSAT 5764; SAT 1884; TOEFL 8128

For applicants to grades 9 and 10, the SSAT or ISEE results must be from tests taken no earlier than August of the year preceding the academic start date at Exeter. Results must be sent directly to Exeter from the testing company.

For applicants to grades 11, we will accept any of the tests in the table below.

For applicants to grade 12 and postgraduates, we will accept your most recent test results for the ACT, PSAT or SAT. Results can be sent as part of the official school transcript or a copy of the score report can be emailed to

We strongly recommend the TOEFL, IELTS, or Duolingo English Test for students who do not speak English as a primary language and haven’t been in an English-speaking school for the last two years. 

Students should refer to the testing description below:

  Standardized Testing (submit ONE)
Applying to Grade SSAT ISEE PSAT SAT ACT
9 or 10 X X      
11 X X X X X
12 or PG     X X X


Gateway, Part 2: Essays and Parent Statement

Essay Questions: Now available on the Exeter Applicant Portal. We require two 200-500 word essays with topic prompts provided within the portal.

Parent Statement: Available on Gateway.

Gateway, Part 3: Transcripts and Recommendations

For recommendations, you simply enter the email address of the recommender. Gateway follows up directly by sending an email with a link to the appropriate recommendation form. 

Transcripts: Current and previous year transcripts (grade reports) must be sent directly from your school, in English. Please request transcripts from your school through Gateway. For additional information on transcripts and special situations, see the notes on the  Gateway application page.

Principal/Counselor Recommendation: Ask for a recommendation from your current principal or guidance counselor and enter a contact email into Gateway.

English and Math Recommendations: Ask for a recommendation from your current English and Math teacher and enter their contact email into Gateway.

Personal Recommendation: Ask an adult (for example, an employer, a church minister or a family friend) to write on behalf of your character and community impact.

Special Interest Recommendation (optional): Ask an adult (for example, a teacher, mentor or coach) to write about particular interests or abilities which demonstrate your passion and commitment.  

Character Skills Assessment (optional)

Exeter is participating in the pilot of SSATB’s groundbreaking Character Skills Assessment (CSA). The CSA will help our admissions team understand the unique values that students will contribute to the Exeter community. Learn more about the CSA.