New SAT Format in 2016

The new SAT format will result in big changes in the spring of 2016.  The current president of College Board, David Coleman has criticized his own test, prompting the company to make changes that focus more on the academic skills students are taught in high school.

The key changes to the new SAT are extensive.  Several of the new changes are listed below:

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  • Changes to the SAT vocabulary words.  Obscure vocabulary words will be eliminated.
  • Change the overall score back to 1,600-point scale.  This will be based on a top score of 800 in reading and math.  A separate score will be applied for the optional essay.
  • Math questions will dwell on the three areas of linear equations; complex equations or functions; and ratios, percentages and proportional reasoning.
  • Points will no longer be deducted for incorrect answers.
  • Change in the reading passage to include sections from one of the nation’s “founding documents”.
  • On the reading and writing sections students will be asked to pick quotations from the text that supports the answers they have chosen.
  • The optional essay is optional.  It will be based on the student reading a passage and then analyzing it based on stylistic elements, reasoning and persuasive techniques.
  • Test time for the test will be three hours.  If a student takes optional essay section the test would be 50 minutes extra

Other changes introduced in the spring of 2016 by College Board will be a free online program that includes instructional videos showing how to solve SAT problems.  College Board will create some form of a partnership with Khan Academy to accomplish this goal.  More detailed information of the change will be available on April 16, 2014.  The information will be posted on the DeliveringOpportunity.org.

Mr. Coleman has stated the new SAT will be geared toward evidence-based thinking that the students have learned in school.  The test will move away from the test-taking tricks and strategies that have been used currently.  Hopefully, this will diminish some of the stress related to SAT test taking for our high school students.

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