The SAT Reasoning Test, previously known as the Scholastic Aptitude Test and Scholastic Assessment Test, is a standardized test, mainly used by colleges and universities in the US to select students for admission. The programme consists of the SAT Reasoning Test and the SAT Subject Tests. The SAT is three hours and 45 minutes long and measures skills in three areas: critical reading, math, and writing. Although most of the questions are multiple choice, students are also required to write a 25-minute essay.
The SAT Subject Tests, on the other hand,?are a one-hour, mostly multiple-choice test in specific subjects. These tests measure knowledge of particular subjects and the ability to apply that knowledge. The SAT is offered seven times a year in the United States. Students can prepare for the test with the help of books, tutors, or online programs. It is published and marked by the Educational Testing Service (ETS).
The SAT has been the subject of controversy ever since it was introduced. It has been described as racist, sexist and a very inaccurate pointer to a person’s real abilities. Because of the way it’s constructed, its high pace, and inherent cultural biases, the SAT denies African-Americans, Latinos, Native Americans, and women equal opportunities for higher education.
It’s almost become de rigueur now for students to attend expensive coaching classes for excellent scores on the SAT, for admissions in top universities. So many myths have sprung up around the SAT, that it’s become something of a bugbear for the academic community in general. It’s time we debunked some of these myths (and earn the gratitude of the long-suffering students).
Myth 1: SAT tests alone determine your chances of admission.
Absolutely untrue. While it’s true that the test does play a role in the admissions process, it’s not the only determinant to college admission. The reality is that when admissions officers evaluate students’ applications, they take into consideration evaluation letters, essays, academic records, awards, work experience, extracurricular activities, to get a clear view of the candidate’s all-round abilities. It is fallacious to assume that the SAT alone determines your chances of getting into the college of your choice abroad.
Myth 2: One has to score over 1350 to get into any of the Ivy League colleges.
This is another of those enduring myths. Many guidebooks provide a median score for each school, which indicates the score at which half the students scored better and half scored worse. A few schools’ list ranges between which most of their admitted students scored. One should keep in mind that every year thousands of students with good academic records but lower than average test scores are admitted to top schools.