The Great Test Score Comeback: Many Colleges Are Reinstating Standardized Testing

The Great Test Score Comeback: Many Colleges Are Reinstating Standardized Testing

From the Author News Tests Uncategorized

After a brief hiatus during the pandemic, many colleges are reinstating standardized test requirements for admissions, and the reason lies in a surprising twist: equity.

Colleges are discovering and reporting that standardized tests actually help level the playing field among students. Research suggests that test scores are a more reliable predictor of college success than high school grades, which have been subject to inflation and vary widely in rigor. By reinstating test requirements, colleges aim to identify talented students from all backgrounds who might otherwise be overlooked.

For instance, UT Austin and MIT both recently reported that they have found that standardized tests help them better predict student success and ensure that students are placed in majors that fit their strengths. Similarly, Harvard and Dartmouth have cited research showing that test scores can highlight the potential of students from under-resourced schools, providing a clearer picture of their academic abilities.

While some institutions never wavered in their requirement for standardized testing, notably University of Florida, a slew of colleges and universities have rejoined the test-required ranks in the past two years:

  • University of Texas at Austin (UT Austin)
  • Harvard University
  • Stanford University as of 6/7/24!
  • California Institute of Technology (Caltech)
  • Brown University
  • Yale University
  • Dartmouth College
  • Purdue University
  • Georgetown University
  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
  • Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech)

Test optional will remain the policy at some colleges and universities, but as you or your student approach your sophomore and junior years in high school, it makes sense to consider how you want to prepare for either the SAT or ACT.  If you’d like help thinking through a plan that makes the most of your strengths and is suited to your college admissions’ goals and schedule, Woodlands Test Prep would be delighted to help!

Perspectives on the Digital SAT

Perspectives on the Digital SAT

Digital SAT Tests

Susan Powers, our Founder, recently served on an industry expert panel about the Digital SAT at the National Test Prep Association’s Winter Conference in New Orleans, Louisiana on December 13th. The panel included Mike Bergin – Chair of the Board of the National Test Prep Association, co-host of the popular college admissions podcast Test and the Rest, and President and Owner of Chariot Learning based in Rochester, New York; Lori Tofexis – SAT curriculum expert and Owner of Circle Test Prep based in Hollywood, Florida; and Brenna O’Neill (moderator) – President of Test Innovators, a leader in digital test preparation curriculum.

Below are a few of the important takeaways from the industry panel.

  1. Desmos is changing the way students will approach the math modules. It is the biggest change in decades.

2. But the biggest changes on the Digital SAT lie in the verbal modules. Check out how the verbal modules are structured and what that means for how you need to allocate your time!

Here at Woodlands Test Prep, we’ve been preparing for the Digital SAT for the last year: analyzing every aspect, building a world-class curriculum, and finding the best ways for students to approach it. We’re here to share what we’ve learned with you!

How to Choose Between the Digital SAT and ACT?

How to Choose Between the Digital SAT and ACT?

From the Author SAT vs. ACT

Now that college admissions is moving back into more of a test-preferred environment, students don’t have to struggle with the choice of whether or not to take a college entrance exam but rather which one. In a recent industry podcast, Test and the Rest: The College Admissions Industry Podcast, Woodlands Test Prep Founder Susan Powers weighs in on the important factors in choosing between the digital SAT and the ACT.

What are five things you will learn in this episode?

  1. Why should students give thought to which test they want to take?
  2. How are the ACT and digital SAT different?
  3. How does the ACT Science section play into a decision about which test to take?
  4. Should you prepare for both the ACT and digital SAT?
  5. Are there any general rules for what types of students are better suited to either test?