What Are The New SAT Changes for 2016?

Hands up if you remember when the College Board announced the change from 1600 point SATs to the 2400 point version. Now put your hands down, because the 1600 point test is making a comeback!

The College Board announced that it will be implementing changes for the spring 2016 exam! A full test document example, which will include sample items, will be become on April 16.

Here are eight changes to the 2016 SATs:

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1. Returning to 1600 scale from 2400

For fifty years, the SAT had separate math and reading sections, each scored from 200 to 800. Then in 2005, the College Board implemented a new writing section, introducing a perfect score of 2400.

Now the new test will go back to it’s roots, following a 1600 point scale.

2. The Essay is now optional instead of mandatory.

The essay will now be optional on the SAT, with a separate score. It will be scored by human graders, who will be trained to score the essays using a scoring rubric. The rubric will be released at a later date. Member school districts and colleges will be able to decide whether they will require an essay.

The exam will have a new evidence-based reading and writing section.

“Students will beaskedtosupportanswers with evidence, including questions that require them to cite a specific part of a passage to support their answer choice,” the College Board announced in a statement.

3. A passage from a founding document

Each SAT exam will include a passage from “founding documents of America,” such as the Declaration of Independence, Gettysburg Address and the “Letter from a Birmingham Jail” by the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.

4. No penalty for wrong answers

While the previous exam penalized students’ scores for wrong answers, the College Board will no longer deduct points for incorrect answers in the new exam.

5. No more “obscure” vocabulary words

Test vocabulary will be focused on words that are “widely used in college and career” instead of “words that are sometimes obscure.”

6. SAT will be available in paper or digital format

Previously, the SAT was available on paper only.

7. Limited calculator use

A calculator will be permitted for certain parts of the math section, compared to the entirety of the current math section. The “no-calculator” section, the College Board says, “allows greater assessment of students’ understanding, fluency, and technique.”

8. Shorter exam*

The new exam will be 3 hours, with and optional 50 minute essay section. The old exam was three hours and 45 minutes.

*Maybe it’s not shorter, but how many people do YOU think see staying to write an essay?

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