The College Board redesigned and released a new version of the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) in March with the most changes it has seen in over a decade, according to CNN.
Test changes have been made in almost all sections of the SAT. The new test has no penalty for guessing, no required essay and a shortened number of multiple choice answer options. Additionally, the math and vocabulary sections now reflect only what is most commonly used in higher learning institutions, according to the College Board.
According to Jaslee Carayol, the College Board’s Associate Director of Media Relations, the College Board took into consideration how admission policies in universities might change due to the redesigned SAT.
“Most colleges plan to accept scores from both tests for a few years,” Carayol said in a news interview. “We have been working with our members across higher education throughout the redesign and have provided detailed information on all aspects of the exam, including scoring changes.”
Harding’s Assistant Vice President for Enrollment Management Glenn Dillard said that Harding’s admission standards and policies will not change right now despite the new test.
“Unfortunately, all the hype about SAT redesigning their score is only that right now — hype,” Dillard said. “(The College Board) won’t be releasing how the new scoring compares to the old scoring until sometime this summer. Until (the changes are announced), I don’t have any information.”
Carayol said that data is being produced and analyzed with every SAT administered and that it will be published this summer to universities. She also said that certain aspects of the new test provide universities more flexibility with admission policies.
“The new SAT underwent extensive research to ensure a fair and valid assessment of college and career readiness for all students,” Carayol said. “By making the essay optional, colleges have the flexibility to set their own requirements, and students have the flexibility to submit another writing sample for admissions consideration.”
Incoming freshmen who apply to Harding, with either the redesigned or old SAT, will not only have their scores looked at, according to Dillard, but will also be reviewed with a holistic approach.
“The best determinant for success isn’t a test score, but high school grades,” Dillard said. “We also require and read two references. We want to make sure that our entering students don’t just compete well academically, but will also contribute to the important spiritual aspect of Harding.”