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Washington Post - October 18, 2019

"Nearly 50 accredited colleges and universities that award bachelor’s degrees announced from September 2018 to September 2019 that they were dropping the admissions requirement for an SAT or ACT score, FairTest said. That brings the number of accredited schools to have done so to 1,050 — about 40 percent of the total, the nonprofit said."

For students who fear they can’t get into college with mediocre SAT or ACT scores, the tide is turning at a record number of schools that have decided to accept all or most of their freshmen without requiring test results.

Meanwhile, two Ivy League schools have decided that many of their graduate school programs do not need a test score for admissions, fresh evidence of growing disenchantment among educational institutions with using high-stakes tests as a factor in accepting and rejecting students.

And the nine-campus University of California system is studying whether to continue using test scores in admissions and, if so, which exams. Famously, a 2001 proposal by then-UC President Richard C. Atkinson to stop using the SAT for admissions spurred the College Board, which owns the test, to add an essay component in 2005 (although it was later dropped as an admissions requirement by many schools after it failed to produce the results they hoped for).

It may not quite have reached a tipping point, but the admissions world is clearly grappling with the use of standardized tests in admissions.

Research has consistently shown that ACT and SAT scores are strongly linked to family income, mother’s education level and race. The College Board and ACT Inc., which owns the ACT, say their tests are predictive of college success, but (as with many education issues) there is also research showing otherwise.

The National Center for Fair and Open Testing, a nonprofit known as FairTest, just analyzed SAT scores for the high school class of 2019. It reported that the gaps between demographic groups grew larger from a year earlier, with the average scores of students from historically disenfranchised groups falling further behind students from more privileged families. ...
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