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The SAT’s low score
Should colleges stop using the venerable aptitude test?
T

he SAT has grown from “an annoying hurdle” on the way to college, said the Economist online, to “a petty nation-wide obsession among the ambitious university-bound,” and among the universities themselves, who encourage high SAT scores to raise their college ranking. But, according to a National Association for College Admission Counseling report, it is not a “great predictor of undergraduate success.”

That’s why a growing number of colleges are making the SAT optional, said Lynn O’Shaughnessy in the College Solution Blog. The NACAC report urges more colleges to consider ditching the tests in favor of other admissions criteria. Even the College Board, which owns the SAT, says high school grades are a better predictor of college success.

Only 5 percent of accredited four-year universities don’t use the SAT at all, said Bob Morse in U.S.News online, and they aren’t ranked in the U.S. News Best Colleges rankings. And until a “meaningful percentage” of colleges drop the test, the magazine will consider SAT scores “an important factor” in ranking a school's “academic atmosphere.”

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