How Do You Feel About the New SAT?

For years, High School juniors and seniors all around the United States have

crammed, studied, and stressed for the one test that would be a factor in where they

would attend college. This year, however, the test has been changed drastically.

The SAT first began in 1901 when a group of leading American universities

became concerned about the lack of a universal way to determine if students were

prepared for college-level course work. They formed the College Entrance

Examination Board and soon created the first SAT. This test is offered many times a

year and can be retaken if a student does not like their first score.

In 2016, the College Board will be officially changing the content, format and

scoring of the test. The test will now more accurately reflect the reading and math

skills students will need and encounter in college and their future work lives. Not

only will the new SAT be shorter, it will be out of 1600 instead of 2400, how the test

used to be before it changed in 2005.

Junior Hope Georgiou said, “I’m going to take the new SAT because I think is

great how we don’t get deducted for getting a wrong answer. I already started prep

for the new SAT and I know the material is a little tougher but it’s only out of 1600

instead of 2400.”

Although many current High School juniors are upset over the changes, due

to the element of surprise it brings to the test and the fact that it come at an

inconvenient time, and have decided to take the ACT instead of the SAT, others are

willing to take on the challenge.

Juliana Bidondo-Yore, a junior at PVHS, sees the new SAT as more of an

obligation. She said, “I will take the new test because I haven’t prepared enough for

the old one and the new one is more convenient.”

Junior Austin Lowi had a similar view on the new SAT as Bidondo-Yore,

stating, “I will take the new test because the new SAT will be out when my time

comes to take it, although I wish the changes had not been made because they were

a large surprise to the entire junior class.”

Although many juniors are taking the new SAT, the question remains on

whether more will decide to opt out of it and take the ACT instead.

Junior Madison Alesso said, “I am taking the ACT instead of the SAT because

it will not be changing, therefore tutors will know how to help me prepare because

they have taken the same test.”

The ACT has remained constant, and therefore he students know how to

prepare based on help and information from tutors and other high school graduates

who have taken the test. Also, as has happened many times in the past, students will

take both the SAT and the ACT, as many understand that colleges will accept their

highest score from either test.

Junior Alana Groves had a different approach to her testing experience; she

has already taken the old SAT, earlier than most of her classmates. “The tutor I was

planning on using to help me prepare for the test took the test thirty six times with a

perfect score,” Groves said. “I figured it would be in my best interests to continue to

have him tutor me and take the SAT before it changed.”

Junior Sage Vetterlein has decided to take the ACT instead of the new SAT. “I

just like the format of the ACT better and the tutoring place I was planning on going

to recommended the ACT instead of the SAT for me,” Vetterlein explained.

The old SAT will be administered for the final time in January of 2016. The

new SAT will be administered for the first time in March of 2016. This gives

students a final chance to take the old SAT in 2016 before it is gone. Although most

graduating seniors have already finished taking the SAT their desired amount of

times, many juniors have yet to begin taking the SAT and ACT, and will therefore not

have much of an opportunity to take the old SAT.

On the new SAT, students can expect an increased emphasis on critical

thinking, problem solving, and data analysis. Also, they can expect to encounter

seven key changes. These changes include scoring, anatomy, timing, administration,

essay, math, and reading and writing. The test will now have four answer choices for

multiple-choice questions instead of five and will have no wrong-answer penalty.

Also, the essay is optional and the test will be available digitally. The math section

will concentrate more on problem solving, data analysis, and Algebra.

Juniors are ready to take on the challenge of this new test, hoping the

changes will work in their favor. Whether the reason they are taking the test be that

it is more convenient or that they are ready to take on the challenge, many juniors

are preparing for this altered test.