METTEN: SAT incompatible with principles of education




So, it’s the final term of junior year and you’re getting prepared to take the SAT for the first time. You’ve been studying vigorously and are both nervous and excited to take it for this is one of the main opportunities you get to prove that you are college worthy. But why is that? 

Why should a test for college that only measures your skills in english and mathematics be relevant to your acceptance into universities?

The following morning, you take the test and feel that you still didn’t do your best. Depending on your financial situation, you may be able to spend another $50 to $70 on another test, but many of us do not have that extra money to spend. 

According to the New York Times, The University of California is being sued for the mandatory SAT and ACT in admissions. Many people say that these tests are only showing test scores without taking in considering a student’s background. In fact, thousands of colleges across the country have already eliminated the requirement of SAT and ACT scores for college.

SAT testing should not be counted towards the chances of getting into a top university or just a state school. The SAT only measures one’s intelligence over the course of one day and one test rather the course of many years combined and testing your knowledge in various courses. The SAT has taken various measures to be inclusive – such as Landscape, which supposedly provides a measure of students’ privilege. However, the principle of the SAT is to be exclusive. Students are not only forced to be condensed to their ability in math and reading. The testing leaves little room for those who suffer from the testing conditions. 

A prime example for why the SAT should not be required is that many students – myself included – suffer from test anxiety. This could often hinder a student’s test results for the answers they have chosen were simply based on the thoughts of just making it through the test. 

Taking these rigorous and stressful tests can be very draining on one’s mental health. Myself and many other friends have spent hours upon hours staying up and studying for the SAT; just to be exhausted and not in the best state of mind for the following morning. Therefore, making the results of the score completely false compared to the effort put in.

A student’s GPA and extracurricular activities provide a much better way of determining whether a student is eligible for a certain college because it is more diverse. It is apparent where a student thrives and where a student may need some more guidance, whereas a standardized test such as the SAT or ACT only show a one time use of knowledge that requires an unrealistic amount of attention. 

For example, a student who has a very high success rate in subjects such as technology and science and have gotten A grades in those subjects throughout high school however they struggle in mathematics. The SAT doesn’t offer students to be tested on those subjects, therefore a student’s knowledge isn’t able to be seen and their inadequacy in one subject is what is seen to those colleges.

In fact, 50% of students who graduate from Roseville High end up going to a community college. However, many of those students, including myself, end up taking the SAT or ACT anyway during high school in case they were going to attend a four year university. This ends up being a tremendous waste of money, for the SAT on average costs $50 to $70 including the essay portion. For students to have to spend this money just for the requirement to be able to apply to a four year is incredibly ridiculous. 

If universities don’t require students to have to take standardized tests like the SAT and ACT, many more students from different backgrounds would have a higher chance of getting accepted into those colleges. Based on their skills and extracurriculars in high school where it counts the most towards their wellbeing.

So, universities and colleges – let’s not look at students as a simple score on a test and determine their value purely by that. A single number should not be the cumulation of who someone is. To set a precedent for the future, let’s see the student for who they are and who they have been. This is more indicative of how they can be successful in their future when looked at for their accomplishments rather than their weaknesses.