By Zachary Rhine
2016 is a year of change. From a new president, to the summer Olympics, and even the SAT’s.
The SAT’s are a trademark used by colleges in the US to gauge high school students using standardized entrance exams, where they are ranked as they are about to enter college.
The SAT’s may help students financially, guide them down what path they should take, and predict how well they’ll do in their secondary education.
Big changes are coming to this daunting and time consuming milestone in a person’s life. Regardless of whether the change is considered beneficial or harmful by the individual, it is coming soon.
The last big change to the SAT’s occurred back in 2005, which means by the time the new changes are put into place it will have been a total of 11 years.
Test-takers will see that the currently required essay is now optional, and the so called “pointless” vocabulary will be cut. There will be no penalty for incorrect answers, therefore encouraging guessing.
The grading scale will be returning to a 1600 scale from the now 2400 scale. Contrary to these potentially helpful changes, there will also be a change to the math portion of the test; the calculators are currently available on every part of the test, but in 2016 they will only be allowed for certain questions.
Also, the SAT’s will be going digital. The digital age is in full swing, and the test will now be available in both written and online form.
PSAT’s, or the preliminary SAT’s, aren’t going to be strangers to change either, and Red Lion is already prepared for them. This year the PSAT’s were available for free to sophomores and juniors during school hours.
The schedule for the day of the test ran the same as the schedule for spring Keystones, meaning that seniors could come in late, and there were activities for freshman to enjoy. Next year this same procedure will occur but with the free test being made available only to sophomores.
“More practice equals more success, which means more opportunities for students.” said Red Lion High School Principal Mr. Mark Shue. “You never want to limit yourself,” said Mr. Shue.
Although these changes could potentially make the challenging tests slightly easier for future students, they should not take them lightly. Along with ACT’s, or American College Testing, SAT’s are the best prediction of student’s success after high school, according to Mr. Shue.
Students need to work hard to prepare themselves to be successful in life. While students may grumble about having to put such energy into a standardized test, the score they receive will affect how colleges view them and hopefully will help them create more opportunities for themselves in the future.
Before going into the test, STUDY, get a good night’s rest, have a healthy breakfast, and mentally prepare to take the future head on.
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