SAT Updates: Hints Speculation and Suggestions

September 25, 2013 

Last week counselors at the National Association for College Admission Counseling annual meeting anxiously awaited a keynote from College Board President David Coleman to learn more about what the organization plans to update on the SAT. Though Coleman didn’t share specifics on SAT updates, he did offer a few ideas for what he’d like to change, according an Inside Higher Ed article by Scott Jaschik.


Current Issue: SAT vocabulary words are not tied to words that are used in the real world.

Idea: Test on vocabulary that proves a person’s eloquence, eliminating the description of “an SAT word” as a “word they would never use again,” according to the article.


Current Flaw: Students can receive high scores on the essay, even if the supporting points used in arguments are not factual. The writing portion “does not grade you on the correctness of what you write,” Coleman said, according to the article.

Idea: Coleman suggested updating the SAT Writing section to make it more analytical, Jaschik reports. “”What if you were analyzing a source” in a short essay “and using evidence from that source?”” Coleman is quoted in the article.

Overall SAT

Issue: Current SAT does not test curriculum learned in school.

Idea: Create a test that reflects high school and college curriculum, that won’t rely on outside coaching to complete, Coleman suggested.

The College Board’s planned revamp of the SAT is welcomed by college admissions officers, according to a study by Kaplan Test Prep. Around 72% of college admission officers agree that the test needed a revamp.

Suggestions from the test group follow many of the points that Coleman covered in his speech.

According to a Kaplan press release, the college admissions officers suggested necessary SAT updates include:

  • “Being more sensitive to perceived socioeconomic and cultural biases”
  • “Revamping, making optional or even eliminating the Writing section”
  • “Making the SAT’s content more reflective of high school curriculum”

As one of the premier test prep companies in Philadelphia, A+ Test Prep will continue to keep you informed on the SAT updates. If you have any questions regarding ACT or SAT test prep, please feel free to reach out to us at 215-886-9188.


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