Death of the ACT/SAT?

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Lauren Hill, Associate Editor

College admissions testing…perhaps the biggest stress of aspiring college applicants. Junior Sarah Ware said, “I think standardized testing can be a good baseline to get a feel for how a person does academically… for colleges who want a certain standard of academics.” But this baseline for colleges could be in danger of going extinct.

While several colleges were already test-optional, last May the University of California chain of schools went test-blind, beginning what might be eventually referred to as the death of college admissions testing.

So, what is the difference between test-blind and test-optional? Test-optional colleges still accept test scores and will still consider them in the admissions process. But, at these colleges, not having a test score will not negatively affect admissions. At test-blind colleges, test scores are never considered in the admissions process.

Why are schools suddenly abolishing college admissions testing? Sarah Ware thought, “It could be in the name of equality and to make things more equal.” When the chain of the University of California schools went test-blind, they claimed that college admissions testing was not an accurate representation of how a student would do in college and was biased toward families who could afford better tutoring for the test. They also claimed it was unfair to racial groups who had a lesser understanding of the English language. While some state that these claims are not based in truth, many colleges continue to follow the trend and become test blind. Does this mean that standardized testing will completely disappear? Probably not.

Most test-blind scores still look at college admissions testing scores when evaluating scholarship applications, with some of them even requiring a test score to apply for a scholarship. In addition, standardized tests can also give students valuable insight into future career and educational planning.

While students might want to attend a test-blind school now, they might want to attend a school that requires a test score later. As of now, the best thing students can do is take a college admissions test in order to keep as many of their options open as possible.