New SAT format is far from perfect

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For years American universities have determined they can rank the potential intelligence of high school students across the nation with a standardized test,  aka the dreaded SAT.

The new model SAT will debut in March 2016 to test standards that are more parallel with Common Core.

Some favorable changes include no-guessing penalties, a 50-minute optional essay on analyzing text, four answer choices instead of five, and the discontinuation of vocabulary completion sentences.

While the revisions seem to benefit students, the new SAT is like the Bermuda Triangle: No one knows how it will go.

The majority of the new SATs material can apparently be traced back to classroom lessons since it’s supposed to be alligned with Common Core standards.

Is it coincidence that David Coleman, the architect of Common Core, is now the president of the College Board, which is responsible for creating the SAT?

By definition, Common Core standards are supposed to provide consistent education across the nation because of differentiating state standards and a globally low academic rank for America.

Common sense will be students’ best friend for the SAT because students will now be tested on how well they can use and find evidence. But  common sense itself is not so common.

The SAT  will transition back to being scored 50 percent on math and 50 percent on reading and writing. The problem is that school is not half  math and half reading and writing.

The SAT could be prone to score inflation because no one knows what to expect. The SAT evaluators cannot predict if average student scores will go up or down until the first tests are administered next spring.

For years the SAT has caused anxiety attacks to the most sanguine of students.  Juniors and seniors spend weeks buried in cram books and study prep materials promising perfect scores.

Not anymore.

The online education oraganization, Khan Academy, is teaming with the new SAT to ensure that all students, no matter the income level, have access to free online SAT prep videos and activities.

Critics of the SAT have complained for years that wealthier students with access to prep classes have an advantage when taking the test.

This SAT is also trying to win back the hearts of students who have left it for the more consistent and logical ACT.

There are so many ways to measure a student’s aptitude. Although coloring bubbles and a earning number up to 2,400 is one way, there are other, better options for the testing the college-readiness of students.