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Dropping SAT Requirement Is A Mistake

Dropping SAT Requirement Is A Mistake

The University of California is quickly approaching a crossroad, and the path it takes will most likely shape the college admissions scene for the rest of the country. An activist group is trying to force the U of C to discontinue using standardized test scores as part of its admissions process by threatening the entire system with a lawsuit, claiming that the SAT test discriminates against minorities.

Originally, SAT was an acronym for “Scholastic Aptitude Test” and intended to measure a student’s natural skills. Today, the test has evolved so far from its roots that it is known simply as the SAT and is no longer an abbreviation of a longer name. Rather than gauging inherent aptitude, the questions are designed to measure critical thinking and analytical abilities.

Despite the automated objectivity of the multiple-choice scoring system, critics denounce the SAT because its founder, Carl Brigham, was a racist. They say bias unfairly persists in the modern version of the test. Some say it is derived from an IQ test, which unfairly favors test-takers from more affluent backgrounds. Others say it is similar to tests once used to prevent certain ethnic groups from entering the United States.

But with public education requirements varying by state with little federal oversight, a uniform national benchmark is needed to objectively evaluate incoming college students. SAT scores allow students from all states to compete for spots in distant universities. Admittance allows them to expand their worldview, both domestically and abroad. In addition to being recognized and accepted by American colleges and universities, SAT scores are universally accepted. Taking this test allows a student the option of studying overseas.

Despite the global use of standardized tests, advocates of dropping the SAT requirement say that other skills, such as grit and determination, are more accurate measures of success during and after college. But, lowering the entrance bar for college freshmen teaches them that if the rules are too hard, they don’t have to follow them. This is poor preparation for life after formal education.

Taking and passing standardized tests continue to be an important skill after a student enters the workforce. The DMV depends on standardized tests to ensure drivers know enough rules to keep themselves and others safe on the roadways. Many online job applications include fill-in-the-bubble sections, and you can bet the hiring manager won’t consider an applicant who opted out. Rigorous multiple-question tests are used to issue licenses to commercial drivers, building contractors, lawyers, doctors, and countless other skilled professionals. Students need to learn test-taking skills, including anxiety management if applicable, at an early age.

Students can – and should – properly prepare for the SAT and its competitor, the ACT. Not all students have the resources or parental support to play on a sports team, hold a part-time job, volunteer, or take music lessons. But, any student can study and ace a standardized test. Study guides can help students to overcome any real or perceived bias that is built into the questions. Study guides and practice tests are available in the reference section of public libraries, so financial need is not a hindrance.

Unless you’re Felicity Huffman, having your kid score well on the SAT won’t cost you $15,000 and 11 days in jail. The current fee for taking the SAT exam with the essay portion is $64.50. This fee is waived for students whose families’ incomes fall below federal poverty levels.

A uniform, nationwide evaluation is an important part of a college admissions application in order to compare applicants from all schools and backgrounds. Dropping the SAT requirement won’t make the application system more fair. It would only make it less stringent, weaken students’ ability to undergo rigorous evaluation, and remove the only objectively scored aspect of the college admissions process.

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  1. Boris

    In early 50s C. Kornbluth wrote an amazing science fiction story “Marching morons”. This story is becoming a reality: marching morons are conquering media, schools, universities, congress – you name it! And they are trying to impose their stupidity on everybody and make it a law, so that nobody smarter than them can demonstrate their stupidity to the world.Woe to America if normal people will surrender to morons…

    • DB

      I would wager that over half of Congress could not pass the SAT evaluation. I’m not saying the test is all that hard, I am saying that they are that stupid and are in positions of leadership! Not everyone should be going to College, its not a place to “grow up or look for a husband or wife”. Trade Schools, and Community Colleges (as they were) are the medium educational places for those that make it past High School but are not ready for being on their own in college or Universities,

  2. Jersey Prophet

    What, in their infinite wisdom, will Californicators substitute for standardized testing in their college admission process?

    How about the number of murders and drug deals a thug achieved in the ‘hood?’ Takes a lotta “grit and determination” to succeed in those enterprises, and definitely removes the racial component of the SAT!

  3. Jim

    It seems that this might be the beginning of the complete dumbing down of our school systems. So now the person that invented the test is a racist. I think everything is racist. If you breath you are a racist. The future requirements for college admission will probably be to spell cat or solve the problem of 1+1. If you disagree with me you are a racist my friend.

    • DB

      Best leave the math problem out because we all know that 1+1 can have twins, triplets, quads, or more!

  4. DB

    California has lost all its credibility over the last 40 years with leaders such as Pelosi, Boxer, Waters, Harris, Schiff, Newsome, Brown, and all the other mentally challenged leaders of that city cess pool of ignorance that live there.

  5. GM

    At the rate they are trying for, a baby just born will be able to get a degree because without tests and education we have nothing to show for our positions in life. When a drop out can qualify for college, crime will be the only successful subject in our educational system. The Democrats will take over and China will become our sister country! At this rate computers will be the only thing with brains!

  6. James Andrews

    California is a crap hole, and getting worse every day thanks the liberal nut bags.

  7. raygun

    We already have low standards on the way to our institutes of higher learning, and now some Marxist has decided to take it one giant leap backward. And it all started back in the 1880s when Marx’s mental army came to the US of A with the game plan of taking over those institutes of higher learning. Mission accomplished ????????????? Yes or no.

  8. JC Heardx

    Are they saying the minorities are to dumb to past the SAT ????

  9. Gene Horn

    The reality is that only about 30% of jobs actually require the knowledge gained in college. If 100% of high school students graduate college, 70% will feel they are underemployed even when they studied something that had nothing to do with a job or attended a college that simply allowed students to slide by.

    What does all this have to do with the SAT or ACT? It is the most valid measure of a high school students education to that point in life and a relevant measure of the student’s capability and knowledge. Although not perfect, it is the best measure of the necessary attributes of a prospective college student.

    Clearly you do not have to have a college degree to be successful. Clearly, drive and effort are relevant motivation are necessary to succeed, regardless of education. Clearly affluent background is not enough. The current bribe scandals prove that!

    What better measure would anyone suggest is more viable?

  10. Derek Blurb

    No comment. Collidj stoodintz for remedjul reedin’. Caint
    reed, caint count, caint right? Gud cannon fodder.

  11. Dan Bohnd

    The Sat Exam is a test of knowledge, commonsense, deduction, responsiveness and long-term knowledge retention. This test should never be trashed because those that believe it is useless, are the same people that barely passed their high school classes, and believe that should be accepted to a 4 year college. These individuals do have the option of attending a Community College for 2-3 years to upgrade their education, thereby finding a greater possibility to overcome the assumed difficulties of passing the SAT.

  12. Gene Horn

    Minorities are not dumb!

    Asians are the top students and test scorers in most schools in the US.

    Females dominate top student ranks in almost all high schools in the US and are the majority in many colleges.

    There is always a way for a high school graduate to go to college.

    The difference is not race, sex or affluence. It is the home environment, dedication and heredity. Accept it or not, we are not all born with the same brain power or any other physical attribute. Can you imagine our insisting that a 5 food 120 pound young person be given the same opportunity to play on a top level high school, college or professional basketball or football team?