College admissions should be more than a score

To help ensure student equity, universities around the country are allowing students to submit applications to the Common App without SAT or ACT scores from The College Board. It is the right decision.

By allowing students to apply to schools with test-optional resumes, Universities stray from the norm of applying with SAT scores, in hopes to help certain candidates have an equal chance in college acceptance. 

College applications have consistently been an issue for graduating high school students. Students find that there are difficulties presenting themselves in a manner that illustrates the strengths they uphold, and qualifications they have to attend a certain university. 

SAT and ACT scores have notoriously portrayed students in a negative light, that discredits their achievements, and prevents students from having a better chance in acceptance. 

The SAT is a 154 question test with sections including math, and evidence-based reading and writing. After four and a half hours of strenuous academic testing, students will score from 0-1600. This score (as said previously) can greatly alter the chances of admission. 

Although the score is important, many factors can diminish the chances of students scoring well. 

Difficulty testing, failing to properly prepare, and inability to take the test in general due to outside factors can all contribute to poor test scores. 

It was studied that students who had wealthier families tended to score higher than those who did not come from similar home lives. Increased wealth amounts can give wealthier students an unfair advantage. 

Money can allow students to have better access to tutors, training sessions, and studying assistance for the SAT. Therefore resulting in higher scores. 

Not only did money assist wealthier students in having higher scores, the test itself costs money to take. 

Certain students that are burdened by poverty may have not even been able to take the test due to the cost of it. If a family is short of money, they may not be able to administer the 52 dollars to the College Board to allow the students to take the SAT or the 85 dollars for the ACT. 

The SAT and ACT also strictly measure testing abilities. 

There are many characteristics that a student may have that will allow them to be accepted into college. 

Strictly measuring a student’s ability to take a test for multiple hours does not accurately illustrate the strengths that the students may have that will qualify them for college. It measures the ability to test. It doesn’t measure work ethic, learning ability, social skills, or intellectual ability. It just measures how well someone can test. 

Students may also not be able to take the test due to unavailability. 

There is often involvement with extracurricular activities. This may include sports which may occupy a majority of times on weekends which is often when the test is being taken. 

Other academic commitments can interfere with available time to study for the test.  Even a job can interfere with the test if a student is unavailable due to certain circumstances. 

COVID-19 has also been the culprit for obstructing students to do well on the SAT or just take it in the first place. Country-wide testing facilities closed, which caused test dates to be canceled or postponed.

 College Board had a lack of consideration for certain students pursuing an education, but because of test-optional universities, now students who were at a disadvantage have a better chance of having a brighter future.