One more thing for high schoolers to think about

College Board releases new version of SAT this March


The College Board is releasing a new version of the SAT this March that will replace the current format.

“The test is evolving to be a better indicator of student’s knowledge based on the content that they’re learning in school today,” founder of PrepMasters, Ned Johnson, said in an interview with the New York Times.

What used to be a test that required intensive prep classes to “de-code” the questions, will now be more about knowledge and less about test-taking skills.

“No longer will it be good enough to focus on tricks and trying to eliminate answer choices,” David Coleman CEO of The College Board said, according to CNN. “We are not interested in students just picking an answer, but justifying their answers.”

Many students who will graduate in 2017 will take both versions of the test.

Junior Lydia Booth is included in that demographic.

“As someone who has already taken the SAT, I think many people will appreciate the changes,” Booth said. “Being tested on your knowledge gives college a better representation of yourself as a student, instead of how well you can decode a question.”

Junior Lilly Jacobsen agrees.

“I think that these changes are really great,” she said. “Before it was all about test taking skills, and now, you can do well with just your knowledge.”

Junior Will Capriola also believes that the SAT doesn’t truly test one’s grasp on content.

“So many of the SAT questions are written with the intent of tricking you that I don’t think the test actually judges knowledge, just whether you have access to a tutor or not,” Capriola said.

The content isn’t the only thing that’s changing.

“Not only will the test be different, but it’ll also be easier,” founder of the 2400Expert prep company, Shaan Patel said.

So how exactly will the test be different?

According to the College Board, the revised SAT will look similar to the SAT in 2006. Instead of being scored out of 2400 as it is today, the highest score will be 1600.

Answer choices will be reduced for four to five, statistically improving student’s chances at getting the question right.

The new SAT will also have more time per section, with a total of 16 less questions, Patel said.

The classic definer of the SAT is losing points for getting a question wrong. With the new version of the test, students will not be penalized for their wrong answers.

Just another thing for high schoolers can add to their mounting pile of concerns.


Illustration by Lia Bodine