The big news in college admissions this week is the College Board’s announcement that it is discontinuing its subject tests and the 50-minute essay section of its flagship SAT test.
This announcement was not surprising and, in our not-so-humble opinion, long overdue. The College Board allocated a number of seats to students who paid the extra fee to take the essay section of its test. Fewer colleges were requiring this essay and, hence, fewer students were sitting for the essay section. This extra section placed quite a burden on high school students who wished to sit for the test during the ongoing pandemic.
The SAT subject tests had also, once again in our not-so-humble opinion, outlived their intended purpose. Besides, the Advanced Placement tests have been increasing in popularity and make this cancellation more advantageous to the College Board. (Yes, we’re aware the nonprofit is supposed to have the students’ best interests at heart.)
Hopefully, these changes make the standardized tests less burdensome for high school students. We’re happy to report that a good number of our applicants were able to secure admission to their stretch schools without the need to take a standardized test thanks to the new test-optional and test-free policies so many colleges adapted.
Unfortunately, some of our applicants needed a standardized test score and too many of them had to endure long drives and even some last-minute cancelations and hotel nights to get the test scores they needed.