Changes to the SAT in the Philadelphia Inquirer

Posted in the College Street Journal - Front Page News
May 7, 2004

No SAT-isfaction An article about upcoming changes to the SAT in the April 19 Philadelphia Inquirer quoted Jane Brown, vice president for enrollment, about Mount Holyoke’s SAT-optional policy. In the article, Inquirer staff writer Alfred Lubrano noted that the “holistic, comprehensive review” favored by MHC and a number of other colleges “lets college admissions officers look more deeply at a student’s life and school work without what Jane Brown, Mount Holyoke’s vice president for enrollment, calls the blunt instrument’ of the SAT.  We would never define a student by the accomplishment of a single morning of effort,’ she said.” The Inquirer article focuses on the addition of an essay requirement to the exam, and quotes critics who doubt the stated goals of the change. “The changes were made, test-makers say, to bring the SAT more in line with school curriculums and improve student writing,” Lubrano wrote. “Critics question, however, whether monetary, not scholarly, concerns inspired the alterations, which come as a growing number of colleges are relying less on standardized tests as the most accurate predictor of student performance. Ultimately, for the 2.2 million students who will take the test, the change won’t be easy.” The article, distributed through the Knight-Ridder wire service, appeared in more than a dozen other newspapers, including the Kansas City Star, the Charlotte Observer, and the San Luis Obispo Tribune.