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March 05, 2014

Standardized tests, like the SAT or ACT, still play a large role in the college admissions process. Increasingly, however, remaining competitive in the big business is requiring hard work. 

APM's Marketplace reports Wednesday that changes for testing are on the way.

The College Board – the company that puts out the SAT – is feeling the heat. In recent years, it's continued to lose market share to the firm that puts out the ACT. The College Board is expected to unveil a new test that's expected to look a lot like the ACT – which means more recognizable to traditional high school curriculum and less esoteric.

Scott Jaschik with Inside Higher Ed wrote about the upcoming changes.

Changes in the SAT affect a lot of people. Last year, 1.66 million students took the exam, a large test-prep industry is based on the SAT, and colleges' score averages are used (even if educators discourage the practice) for many high school students trying to decide if they have a shot at admission to a particular institution.

NPR recently wrote on a study  that looked at the effectiveness of the SAT and ACT as predictors of success in college. As more and more schools become "test-optional," that is they don't require applicants submit any test scores, new numbers have emerged.

(The study) found that there was virtually no difference in grades and graduation rates between test "submitters" and "nonsubmitters." Just 0.05 percent of a GPA point separated the students who submitted their scores to admissions offices and those who did not. And college graduation rates for "nonsubmitters" were just 0.6 percent lower than those students who submitted their test scores.

Check here for details about what the new SAT will look like. 

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