The SAT is not a proper representation of students skills

By Hannah Newman

If every athlete was given one shot at scoring, one shot that would determine a college’s offer, is the athlete really being evaluated on their skill, or are they being evaluated on one achievement they made? One opportunity to prove an individual’s true potential and skill is simply impossible, and that is why all colleges and universities should shift to test- optional acceptance in order to see the potential talent and intelligence of students without considering a student’s score on a singular test.

The Scholastic Aptitude Test has become a determining factor for a student’s access to opportunities, where they will go to school, how much money they will get and essentially what options they will have in their future. Students are trained throughout their entire academic career to not get discouraged when they fail a test because there will always be another one to make up for it. However, if a student doesn’t get a score at or above a certain designated level, they may not get accepted into the college they hope to attend.

Although students have the chance to retake this test, they can only do so when the test is offered during the year, and in some cases, students have to travel out of town to find a place that is giving the test at a time that works best for them. Additionally, students are charged $25 if they want to change their testing location and charged $31 to get their score back in a time range of one to four days, which in some cases is critical if students need to meet an application deadline and the test itself is $60.

The SAT will only send a student’s score to four schools for free, and if students wish to apply to more then four schools, it is an additional $12 per school thus discouraging students from applying to as many schools as they can. However, the fight to get to college involves battling financial conflicts, transportation inconveniences and endless hours studying the algorithm of this test, which takes away time from their regular study hours.

Many students are encouraged to get private tutors for the SAT, which can cost hundreds of dollars. A test that has to be studied intensely requires training and preparation, as well as expenses, is not a test that evaluates a student’s academic performance. Instead, it is a test that evaluates a student’s place in society and illuminates the disadvantages students face growing up in terms of money, transportation and time that may have to be spent working rather than studying for this test. The fight to become successful in life is a battle that will be faced regardless of how intelligent an individual is. Adversity has built the most monumental figures of success in society.

Howard Schultz, the founder of Starbucks, who was born in poverty, was rejected over 200 times when he proposed the idea to turn Starbucks coffee bean company into the $100 billion cafe that it is today. This is a prime example that all students will be thrown into the competitive world of finding a job and sustaining a sufficient living despite how knowledgeable on one test they may be. That is why students should be recognized for their academic abilities rather than the result of a standardized test. This encourages the chance that they may get to go from impoverished to experiencing the unimaginable.

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