College Board takes advantage of students and parents

By charging absurd prices for similarly designed tests, the College Board takes advantage of high school students due to the fact that their tests decide the fate of students’ futures. The College Board profits off of the test despite being a non profit.

Through overpriced products and inherent bias, the College Board takes advantage of high school students.
The College Board is the maker of the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) and Advanced Placement (AP) exams. They also own NCS Pearson, which provides and develops educational testing and assessment technology.
By producing a set of tests that all have similar qualities, the College Board causes students to continue to take standardized test after standardized test and base their academic future off of them.
Standardized testing already only subscribes to one particular way of thinking and does not take into consideration different learning styles. It does not help to evaluate the “college readiness” of students based off of test scores.
There are numerous concerns regarding race and the origins of the SAT as well. The SAT was inherently biased from when it was invented by Carl Brigham in 1926, according to
Brigham was a known eugenicist, writing “A Study of American Intelligence,” which contained several statements about racial purity. Brigham wrote that the education of other races was causing a decline in American education.
While inventing the SAT, he wanted to prove white superiority with the test and stop the “infiltration of white blood into the Negro,” according to The Atlantic.
The highest scorers, unsurprisingly, were rich and white men, given that Brigham created a test that was meant for white people to score the highest.
Even now, according to the Brookings Institution, the gap between black and white students’ mean scores has barely changed from 1996 to 2015.
Along with racial gaps in testing, students’ academic futures still, at least partially, depend on these tests. According to US News, 95% of colleges require SAT scores.
This leads to students needing test prep. According to The Huffington Post, in 2015, parents spent $13.1 billion on test preparations which included tutoring and counseling.
The College Board reported two million students taking the SAT in 2018, 1.7 million students taking the AP exams in 2017 and two million students taking the ACT in 2018. Every single one of these tests has a fee attached to it.
AP exams cost $94, the ACT costs $50.50 and the SAT costs $49.50. There is no reason for these tests to have this high of a cost when every student, no matter their income, needs to take it to apply to college.
The College Board claims to be a not-for-profit organization. However, according to an article by The Washington Post the organization earns upwards of $1 billion each year.
Along with this revenue, the College Board has a 501(c)(3) tax exempt status, meaning that they do not pay federal income tax.
Some of this money is used to defray costs of producing AP Exams and SATs, paying AP graders and producing textbooks. However, this does not explain why College Board CEO David Coleman takes home around $700,000 per year, according to The Washington Post.
If the College Board claims to want to “connect students to college success,” why must students bear so many of their costs and line the pockets of College Board officials?
The standardized testing industry has profited off of students enough. We must recognize the faults of the College Board and bring attention to them before the College Board harms another generation.