How has COVID-19 affected the SAT?


Michelle Kurianowicz, Staff Writer

In the recent months, we have seen a great decline in the impact the SAT and other standardized tests have on the college admissions process. The main perpetrator of this decrease of impact has been the COVID-19 pandemic. The pandemic has greatly contributed to the number of schools suspending, or even ending SAT requirements. Many students are further voicing their opinions that support these decisions. Junior Brooke Leimeister is one of these students, as she agrees with the fact that colleges are lessening the weight of the SAT and other standardized tests. “Some colleges not taking SAT scores actually help a lot of students because it relieves some stress knowing that one test wont predict your future”, says Brooke. 

This past Saturday, March 13th 2021, I took my first SAT exam as a junior. Test administration was standard, and has not been changed due to the pandemic. Students took the traditional four section test, which consisted of reading comprehension, writing and language, math without a calculator, and math with a calculator. Students who opted to take the optional essay remained at the testing site for an extra 50 minutes in order to complete the task. Of course, there were various rules set in place in order to help stop the spread of the virus. Students had to keep their masks on for the whole duration of the test, temperatures were checked at the entrance, and desks were placed six feet apart for social distancing. Test proctors wore masks and gloves, as they were handling all test materials. 

CollegeBoard recently announced that the optional essay portion of the SAT will be permanently cancelled, with its last administration taking place in June of 2021. Students have mixed feelings about this, as some students feel that writing is their strong suit, and now this will not reflect in their SAT score. The CollegeBoard has also made the drastic move of canceling all SAT Subject tests moving forward. CollegeBoard claims that these changes have been made in order to even the playing field between students of different backgrounds and demographics.