Recently all over the news, there has been word of the new changes to the SAT coming in spring 2016. Being in high school, this affects me the most. I, among others future juniors, will be the first batch of kids to be tested using the new format. I am still unsure of how I feel of these changes, yet I know what a major impact my future SAT scores will have in deciding which college I will go to after high school. And since I will be the most affected by these changes, I have done some research.
Overall, the new SAT will:
- be offered both online and in print form.
- be scored on a 400-1600 point scale.
- have no penalty for wrong answers.
- have more real-world related passage-based reading.
- not include obscure vocabulary.
- include an optional analysis essay.
Ever since this news was released, there has been much controversy surrounding the new changes. Personally, I feel like I’d be better off taking the old version of the SAT earlier, and depending on how well I do, taking the new one as well.
I can say that I am not so fond of some of these changes. I don’t like the idea of an optional essay, since the essay is the only really raw part of the entire test. The rest of the test is just filling in bubbles and writing in numbers. The essay is the only portion in which test givers can see how students really think. I really don’t see the point in making the essays optional either, since most colleges will most likely require it. As for the increase in passage-based reading questions, I am not so happy about either. There seems to be less variety in the new SAT. And oddly enough, I have always liked learning new SAT vocabulary words regardless of how obscure they were, so that’s a disappointment too.
Other than this, I have no idea what to think about the changes, since I have not yet seen the new types of questions there are going to be. The College Board will, however, release new sample SAT questions on April 16 this year. How do I feel about the whole switcheroo? I can’t say… at least not yet. Luckily, I have the opportunity to take the old version and the new one.