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The Aquilian

    The SAT undergoes massive changes

    The SAT will be experiencing major changes in upcoming years.
    The SAT will be experiencing major changes in upcoming years.

    The SAT, a long-standing standardized test used in the college-decision process, will receive massive changes set to take effect in 2024. The SAT will transition from a paper exam to a digital exam. Instead of filling out bubbles on a Scantron sheet, students will click on their answer choices using a digital format.

    This change will take a while to come into effect as the first ones to experience the change will be test-takers overseas in 2023. It will then take effect in the United States one year later in 2024; Gonzaga’s current freshman class will be the first to experience these changes. In addition to going digital, the standardized test will also become shorter in length, and the difficulty will be decreased. These changes will be made in an attempt to decrease the anxiety surrounding the SAT. 

    Commentary: Standardized tests reward kids from wealthy families - The San Diego Union-Tribune
    Photo by Associated Press and taken from https://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/opinion/commentary/story/2019-11-27/commentary-standardized-tests-reward-kids-from-wealthy-families-utak

    “Some of the rigidity, stress and the length of the test, we could only make those kinds of changes going digital,” said Priscilla Rodriguez, College Board Vice President, told Sarah Wood in her story in the U.S. News & World Report when asked about the future changes.

    In the article “Three Reasons Why You Should Pay Attention To The SAT Redesign” in Forbes, Kristen Moon highlights three main reasons why the College Board is making these modifications to its exam. The digital test will be much cheaper to take and administer. This will help relieve the financial burden of SAT. It will also be a much easier test. The reading passages will be much simpler to understand and comprehend, and graphing calculators will be permitted for the entirety of the math section. Finally, this redesign of the SAT will help better prepare students for college and for the future. 

    “I think that there are more wins than losses in all of this. This generation is much more comfortable with electronics than any other. It will definitely be beneficial for Gonzaga students as they use technology on a daily basis. My main concern is for students at other schools that lack access to computers and technology,” said Mr. Patrick Gallagher, Director of College Counseling. 

    The SAT is a multiple choice test used as a factor in the college decision making process for applicants. Throughout a student’s high school career, this is one of the most important and most stressful parts of their time in high school. It requires an immense amount of time for preparation and can also become very costly. The CollegeBoard hopes that these adjustments to the exam will make the high school and college application process much less stressful and a lot simpler. This should act as a massive step forward in the process of improving students’ mental health around the world.

     

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