The Scholastic Assessment Test (SAT) will be shortened and fully digital by 2024, according to a Jan. 25 press release from College Board. The changes will take place in 2024 for students in the U.S., and 2023 for international students. “The digital SAT will be easier to take, easier to give, and more relevant,” College Board Vice President of College Readiness Assessments Priscilla Rodriguez said in the press release.
Additionally, the test was formerly three hours, and it has now been reduced to two. This includes more time per question for students. Reading passages will become much shorter, and will only have one question per section. Students will also get scores back within a couple of days, compared to the usual months-long wait. To make the test more equitable the College Board will, “Provide one for use on test day.”
In 2021, the University of California (UC) board of regents decided that the UC system wasn’t using the SAT/ACT in its decision-making process. Eighty percent of colleges are now test-optional, and more are joining every year, according to an organization called Fair Test. “Most people I know didn’t even take [the SAT],” senior Liam Armistead said.
The changes to the SAT have been supported by some students. “[The SAT is] way too long, it’s so hard to think at the end … it’s intense,” senior Bryce Mason said.
Current freshmen will be the first class to experience the new test. “Shorter times sound great, I don’t know how bad it was before, but it sounds bad,” freshman Kimberly Steel said.
There are numerous equity issues associated with the SAT; families better off financially can pay for tutors, practice tests, and stay more involved with their kids’ learning, according to an organization called the Ivy Scholars. “[I think they should] get rid of it … it doesn’t predict how a student will do in college, it also has a direct correlation with income,” history teacher Luc Chamberlain said.
The test changes in 2024 are reflecting current trends surrounding test-taking, as 44 percent of applicants reported their scores, according to the Common Application. However, “83% of students said they want the option to submit test scores to colleges,” the College Board wrote in a press release.