S O S: Save Our Sanity

It’s no longer just the students complaining about standardized test, research has now taken place that supports the students’ pleas to abandon these tests. Not only are the tests time consuming, but they have also been proven to be biased on many different platforms.

Caucasian, men, upper class, and prestigious institutions are all characteristics that benefit from the bias of the ACT, SAT, and other standardized tests. The National Center for Fair and Open Testing conducted an investigation to address the concerns of bias on national standardized test. What they found was that a“fast-paced, multiple-choice format favors males over females. Guessing, a risk males are more likely to take, is rewarded. Since multiple-choice items do not allow for shades of meaning they work against the most typical female thinking style” [1]. Organizations like the ACT and College Board, who administer the SAT, know of these biases within their test, but neglect to make any changes to the formatting.

In response, many universities are moving to void the standardized tests from the application process because it does not give the university an accurate insight into the prospective student. “Even the test-maker admits that high school grades predict first-year college grades better than ACT scores do” [1].

For many students test scores cause excessive stress and anxiety. Many take the ACT or SAT, or both, more than twice. People have even been taking is 4-5 times! Not only is the studying and preparing for these test time consuming, but is also expensive. Each test costs almost $60 to take, this does not include the $13 fee for EACH school you want to send your scores to, or the outrageous fees for tutors and study guides.

I myself have taken the ACT three times, the SAT once, spent countless hours with tutors, and still, I have not achieved a score that represents my academic abilities. A standardized test score demonstrates what a student can achieve in four hours. Whereas four years of coursework and GPA can demonstrate what a student can achieve through studying, research, and determination. Life and careers are not a race, so why should our education system base admissions on tests that are?

[1] https://www.fairtest.org/act-biased-inaccurate-and-misused