I ran across an interesting article published before the final administration of the current version of the SAT and thought I'd share it with you. It briefly covers the changes in the SAT since 1926 (I know, crazy, right?) by revealing sample questions. A quick read and kind of interesting. Check it out.
A History Of The SAT In 4 Questions
This weekend, college hopefuls will line up for the last time to take the SAT. That is, at least, the current version of the famous college entrance exam. The SAT, which remains a pillar of college admissions, has gotten a serious makeover (its first since 2005), and a new test will roll out in March.
Since students took the first multiple-choice SAT back in 1926, the test has changed considerably — both in style and in substance. To mark this latest makeover, we thought we'd offer up four examples of SAT questions from across the exam's history that reflect _____ changes in America.
D. Mustard seed
E. A, B, C
(Answer at the bottom of this post)
Quiz Yourself With An Evolving SAT
THE FIRST SAT IN 1926
Which three of the following words are most closely related?
runner : marathon ::
The Lyndhurst High School twelfth graders are represented in the circle graph in Figure 1. Figure 2 is another way to illustrate the use of computers by these twelfth graders. If the same 200 twelfth graders are represented in both figures, what is the total number of twelfth graders represented by the shaded circle in Figure 2?
Newspaper editor and political commentator Henry Louis Mencken was a force of nature, brushing aside all objects animal and mineral in his headlong rush to the publicity that surely awaited him. He seized each day, shook it to within an inch of its life, and then gaily went on to the next. No matter where his writing appeared, it was quoted widely, his pungently outspoken opinions debated hotly. Nobody else could make so many people so angry, or make so many others laugh so hard.
The words "seized" and "shook" help establish which aspect of Mencken's personality?
As for the new SAT, Cyndie Schmeiser, the chief of assessment at the College Board, says it was time to stop doing a few key things. Among them: asking students "the definitions of words that perhaps they crammed for the night before the test but may not use."
The new test, Schmeiser says, will include vocabulary, but within a reading passage. Less cramming, more context. Also, students can expect to find an increased emphasis on using evidence in a passage to back up answers.
The College Board hopes the redesign will provide a more accurate measure of a student's college and career readiness — a phrase made famous by advocates of the Common Core learning standards. Those standards, in reading and math, are now being used by the vast majority of states, and the SAT's chief rival, the ACT, is surging in part because it was first to adapt to the core. Now the SAT is playing catch-up.
The entire testing landscape is changing alongside the SAT. Now that most states are using common standards, a few are debating whether to replace some traditional, end-of-year high school assessments with a test that many students, especially 11th-graders, already take: the SAT or ACT.
At least half a dozen states have already gotten permission from the U.S. Department of Education to use one of the college entrance exams as an official high school assessment. That's welcome news for students in, say, Connecticut, who should spend less time testing as a result.
The irony is, as states embrace these college entrance exams in new and powerful ways, many colleges are doing the opposite. Just this week, the Harvard Graduate School of Education released a report calling on admissions offices to go test-optional or, at least, to pay less attention to tests and more to a student's "concern for others and the common good."
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