Panic swallows the streets of a small town in southern New Hampshire. At every turn, people are wallowing in sadness: bent over backwards begging the heavens for answers. What could have happened to cause such appalling misery, a flood or a fire? No, college rejection letters have arrived in the mail today. Although this scene may be a slight exaggeration of the truth, teenagers everywhere dread college rejection more than most other rational fears. The leading cause of college rejection is poor SAT scores; at least, that is what The Princeton Review and College Board want these helpless souls to think. These people claim that the SATs are an important tool and deciding factor when it comes to college admissions. An objective reader would probably then realize that some of the only people promoting the test are the ones who created it. They are the ones who benefit from the millions of students that take these standardized tests each year; an objective reader would also realize that the financial benefit to these companies is extremely high considering it is basically a required test and it can cost over forty dollars each time it is taken.
[...] The SAT is only a decent measure of how well a student can take a test, and nothing more. Any given person has so much more to offer to college, society, and the world than just a few standardized test scores. The SAT also fails to recognize the other abilities that a person has such as his or her personal experiences, any work experience, community service, leadership qualities, and defining extracurricular activities. Granted, the SAT was not made to show these critical features; however, some schools that rely too much on standardized test scores and not enough on the essays or the person are making an enormous mistake which could very well lead to a waste of unfulfilled human potential. [...]
[...] In addition, because these standardized tests are so incredibly susceptible to coaching, students can know exactly how to play the game and outwit the creators of the test. Bob Schaeffer, the Director of Public Education of FairTest—the national organization for the abolition of standardized testing—, says in an interview with PBS news program Frontline, “There's a lot that can be taught in coaching courses that has nothing to do with any of the skills you need to succeed in college or in life” (Schaeffer). [...]
[...] Since humans are grading the essays, and humans are inherently flawed, some essays written for the SATs are not graded correctly. The SAT- I writing part is almost the same as the SAT subject test for writing that also makes it lose a lot of its worth and credibility. Because these tests are almost identical, it seems as though the only point of having both is so that the corporations can make some quick cash. Another misconception about the new SAT is that it will cause the school systems of the United States to function better and the students will learn more. [...]
[...] Bates College in Lewiston, Maine says, submission of standardized testing (the SAT SAT II, and the ACT) has been optional for admission at Bates since 1984” (“Admissions”). Bates is a highly selective college that only admits about twenty-nine percent of their applicants. The philosophy behind this revolutionary application process is that students who are better qualified without the SATs will apply there. This policy also acts as an excellent invitation for more students to apply to a college even if they did not score well on the SAT or the ACT tests. [...]
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