FAQ About the New SATs

Q: When were the revised SAT first used?
A: March, 2016. January, 2016 will be the last administration of the “old” version.

Q: Will the change the affect college planning for my daughter/son who is now a junior; graduating class of 2016?
A: Probably not. Most high school seniors will have submitted the required testing and completed their applications at that point.

Q: Is it possible that a high school student who is now a sophomore (class of 2017) will end up submitting scores from both versions?
A: Yes. High school juniors usually take the SATs for the first time in the winter/ spring of the junior year. For the class of 2017 that will be the spring of 2016, which is when the transition occurs.

Q: Will college admissions offices place different importance on one version or the other?
A: Stay tuned. It is not exactly clear. There is no uniform answer to that question. The “new” version, of course, will have no long-term statistical track record.

Q: Will the “new” version be more difficult?
A: The answer to your question will vary from student to student. I do believe that the “new” version is a more “honest” test.

Q: What do you mean?
A: Random memorizing of a list of vocabulary words will be less helpful because vocabulary & usage will be asked in context. Essays will be more analytical. Calculator use on Math sections will be reduced.

Q: What about preparation?
A: Fall of 2015 will be the first PSAT using the “new” version as its foundation. Members of the classes of 2018 & 2017 are eligible to take this sitting of the PSAT.

Q: Why is the College Board doing this?
A: The marketplace. Two things are happening in the world of standardized testing for college admissions:
1. The ACT. Last year, for the first time, the number of students taking the ACT surpassed the number of students taking the SAT.
2. College admissions offices eliminating the standardized test admissions requirement. When colleges eliminate the standardized test requirement applications increase. About 20% of four year colleges no longer have that requirement.