Tuesday, July 22, 2008

New SAT Score-Reporting Policy: Better or Worse?

Last month, the College Board announced changes to their SAT score-reporting policy, giving students who take the SAT multiple times the flexibility to choose which scores colleges will receive during the admissions process (see the complete announcement below). Current policy allows colleges to see the scores from all SAT attempts a student makes; as of spring 2009 (sorry, rising seniors!), students will be able to sit for the exams as many times as they like and "hide" all but their best scores from admissions officers.

While College Board states that changes are intended to benefit students by enabling them to select the scores that they believe best represent their abilities, the education community has voiced concerns about the new policy, including the possibility that it provides an unfair advantage to kids who can afford to take the test as many times as they like, and the fact that kids taking and re-taking the SAT means more money in the pockets of the already incredible lucrative College Board. Learn more about the arguments for and against the SAT policy changes in Lucia Graves' article in U.S. News and World Report.

New SAT Score-Reporting Policy

The College Board has approved an important change to the current SAT score-reporting policy. This new policy will give students the freedom to send the scores by sitting (test date) that they feel best represent their ability to colleges and universities, at no additional cost. Designed to reduce student stress and improve the test-day experience, this new score-reporting feature will launch in early February 2009, and will therefore be available to students participating in the March 2009 test administration.
Any student who has taken an SAT prior to the policy launch or who registers for the SAT after launch will be able to take advantage of this new policy. The students who have taken tests prior to the launch can use the score-reporting feature retroactively. Additionally, this new score-reporting feature will be optional to students. If a student chooses not to select their scores, all of their scores will be sent.
This new score-reporting feature also gives colleges the ability to choose which scores are required for admission. Colleges and universities will communicate any changes to their admissions policies or application requirements to students.

Fast facts

  • Students will be able to select which scores they send to colleges by sitting (test date) for the SAT and by test for SAT Subject Tests™.
  • Scores from an entire SAT test will be sent—scores of individual sections from different sittings cannot be selected independently for sending.
  • Students can send any or all scores to a college on a single report—it will not cost more to send one, multiple or all test scores.
  • Students will be instructed to follow the different score-reporting requirements of each college to which they apply.
  • The new score-reporting feature will be optional—if students do not use it, all scores will be sent automatically.
  • The score-reporting feature can be used on any score report that students send:
    • The four score reports available through online or phone registration (applying to already scored tests) and additional score reports
  • The new score-reporting feature functionality will be available to all students via the Web or by calling Customer Service toll free (within the United States)
  • Students who complete a test prior to the launch of the new score-reporting feature will be able to take advantage of this option when sending past or future scores.


Q: Will this new score-reporting feature be available to students who have already registered for test dates that occur after launch?

A: Yes. Students who have already registered for the March 2009 administration or later 2009 dates can revisit their registration information and take advantage of the new score-reporting feature after launch.

Q: Is the new score-reporting feature available for both SAT and SAT Subject Tests score reports?

A: Yes. Students will be able to select which scores they send to colleges by sitting (test date) for the SAT and by test for SAT Subject Tests.

Q: Does the new score-reporting feature affect other aspects of SAT registration and score-report timing, policies or processes?

A: No. The new score-reporting feature allows students to select which scores are sent to institutions. It does not affect score-report timing or other policies and procedures that are not directly related to sending score reports.

1 comment:

brett said...

This is fascinating.
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