The SAT Is Changing

Naganachiketh Chinnamuttevi, Staff Writer

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The SAT is a standardized test that not many look forward to, but have to take. This ancient test was founded generations ago in 1920 as “an adaptation of the Army Alpha, an IQ test used to check the intelligence of recruits to the US Army” (Peterson’s SAT History). The SAT has been evolving over time to meet the requirements of the top colleges, so they can use the test results to accept the freshman class candidates. The SAT changed in 1994 when the College Board revised the test to include open-ended math, calculators were allowed, and the reading passages were longer. Again in 2005, the SAT went through a reboot: an essay was added as mandatory. Now ninety years after the test was created, it is changing again. It looks like the test took a roundabout by removing the mandatory essay, introducing a no calculator section of the test.

I just took the new PSAT, and I realized that having one section for each skill (math no calculator/calculator, reading, writing) was much more organized than the old test with scattered sections, but this time the test is very time bound. These are the changes in the new test, some parts have become easier for few, and others became tough, so the test is still balanced:

4 parts: Reading, Writing and Language, Math(no calculator and calculator), and the optional SAT Essay

400–1600 score scale

3 hours and 50 minutes with the SAT Essay — or 3 hours without it

4 answer choices

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The SAT Is Changing