The number of college-bound students taking the Scholastic Aptitude Test is losing ground to the ACT. John W. Sipple, director of the New York State Center for Rural Schools and professor of Development Sociology at Cornell University, discusses proposed changes to the popular SAT in response to its eroding market share.
“The rationale for the major changes to the SAT are a complicated mix of market forces and equity concerns. The SAT has steadily lost ground in terms of test takers to the ACT, and this is a brash move to regain market advantage.
“Alternatively, the SAT has long been criticized as being biased in favor of advantaged populations. The current SAT serves to assess aptitude regardless of what school – strong or weak – one attends, but the new SAT now becomes another measure of school quality.
“The new SAT will be teachable, and the better schools will do this well. Ultimately, whether this change to a new version of the SAT will achieve either of these goals is very unclear. I don’t really care about the first one, but the second is the a must.”