This is a fascinating examination of standardized testing by a college president and testament to importance of authentic assessments.
Clearly, we are in the midst of change in education. Leon calls for “..not minor so called improvements to the SAT, but an entirely new generation of testing instruments that utilize modern technology not only to measure the performance of our students but also teach them. ”
It’s not often that we hear University and College presidents speak out. But considering Bard’s history, I’m not surprised that they are taking a stand on this. Originally founded as St. Stephens in 1860, Bard College has often taken a path less traveled in education.
The changes recently announced by the College Board to its SAT college entrance exam bring to mind the familiar phrase “too little, too late.” The alleged improvements are motivated not by any serious soul searching about the SAT but by the competition the College Board has experienced from its arch rival, the ACT, the other major purveyor of standardized college entrance exams. But the problems that plague the SAT also plague the ACT. The SAT needs to be abandoned and replaced. The SAT has a status as a reliable measure of college readiness it does not deserve. The College Board has successfully marketed its exams to parents, students, colleges and universities as arbiters of educational standards. The nation actually needs fewer such exam schemes; they damage the high school curriculum and terrify both students and parents.
The blunt fact is that the SAT has never been a good predictor of…
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