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Higher Education Watch
The End of the SAT?
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  • solstice

    I hate politically correct leftism but, seriously, there is no scientific evidence for the existence of “races,” let alone for the notion that certain races are more intelligent or civilized than others. Our genetic composition as a species is such that if humans were dogs, we would all be one breed. Certainly, cultures are different and some are more advanced and civilized than others, but the claim that there exists a racial hierarchy of intelligence or peacefulness has no scientific basis. We are immensely indebted to science and, more specifically, genetics, for doing so much to undermine claims such as yours.

    • Fred

      Well of course not all whites have higher IQs than all blacks or all Asians higher IQs than all whites. But its hard to credibly deny that as a group Asians have a higher IQ average than do whites, who have a higher IQ average than do blacks. The numbers have been very consistent for a very long time. How much of that difference is genetic, how much is cultural, and how much is due to other factors or combinations of factors is perhaps open to debate, but it strains credulity to dismiss genetics entirely, especially since when you control for factors like socio-economic status and parental education the gap narrows but persists at a statistically significant level.

  • Chris_8304

    There are so many choices for smart, ambitious high school students who are looking for the right college to attend. When a school goes “test optional” it is a good signal that they are one school such students can cross of their list.

  • j3relowf

    Another problem is that students who are admitted to colleges they are not qualified for often fail. It does not to help underachieving students to take them into a university for which they will have to pay back student loans without ever getting a degree. Universities don’t really care about underachieving students, they just exploit them in every way they can.

  • iconoclast

    It remains the case that accepting students likely to fail–of any skin color–will do nothing to improve the only ration that matters, the graduation rate for the different favored and unfavored races. California proved this when they temporarily stopped quota admissions and graduation rates overall went up (because formerly favored races attended second and third tier universities instead of the first tier universities for which they were horribly unqualified).

    Probably the best way to increase diversity in universities would be to destroy and rebuild on a free-market, parent-controlled basis our entire K-12 education system. But that will never happen because of the power control over that system grants to public unions and their crony politicians.

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  • Ann in L.A.

    The College Board is currently in the hands of people heavily wedded to constructivism and the Common Core. Part of the reason colleges might be ignoring it, is that it is a damaged brand.

  • vepxistqaosani

    The article assumes that assortative mating has had no effect and, therefore, that poor kids would do as well as rich kids if they had the same resources. This assumption is debatable.

    • Co-homology

      The difference is not as much as you think.

      • CapitalHawk

        That’s an excellent point. Everybody knows that kids are assigned random IQs at birth and that the IQ of a child is in absolutely NO WAY related AT ALL to the IQ of his/her parents. Because that’s just how genetics works. /sarc

  • Fat_Man

    I don’t like the message so I will shoot the messenger. Having been through the college admissions system a few times with my kids, I thoroughly despise it. It is like playing poker with a man named Doc and his friend Bugsy. You know you are being scammed, but you don’t know how, and you dare not complain about it. Mostly it exists to provide cover to the private schools for favoring the children of the rich and the well connected over the ignorant saps from fly-over country.

    I have decided that there is only one absolutely fair way for selective colleges to run their admissions programs. That is a lottery. No tests, no grades, no essays, no interviews. Just put your name, address, and SSN, on a form along with the names of institutions you want to go to. The names will but into a hat (actually a computer program) and be drawn at random.

    This would only affect Colleges that are not willing to take everyone who applies. The schools can weed out their classes by making freshmen take the usual intros, calculus, general chemistry, composition, foreign language. The ones who can’t cut it, probably won’t make it until spring.

    There will be no more complaining about the SAT, legacy admissions, feeder school preferences, athletic recruits, or affirmative action.

  • jeburke

    I’m sick of hearing about the supposed advantages conferred on “rich kids.” I was never remotely rich and both my children grew up to be academically superior. Chinese, Korean and Vietnamese kids in NYC whose fathers toil in restaurant kitchens and live in overcrowded tenements are flooding the city’s competitive high schools and could easily comprise a majority of the students at the best city and state colleges. And not so long ago, when NYC had two million Jews, hundreds of thousands of Jewish garment workers produced two generations of outstanding college graduates.

    We all know what really makes the difference in children’s educational success and money has next to nothing to do with it.

    • CapitalHawk

      There is a small advantage conferred on rich kids due to the fact that money can be spent on prep courses, etc. But the main advantage is genetic. Rich people have, on average and as a group, a higher IQ than poor people do, on average and as a group. That is part of the reason they are rich. So then, not surprisingly, their children also have a higher IQ level (on average and as a group). And voila, you have higher SAT scores (which is just a disguised IQ test).

  • Co-homology

    Keep the SAT but use application pool of top 10% students in every high school. From there use whatever criteria or
    just use a lottery. This will increase the diversity or rich parents might start sending their kids to poor schools and
    therefore improve the schools.
    BTW, the straight A 4.0 GPA and super high SAT scores just indicates ability to ace multiple choice tests and a total lack of passion. The only
    profession these students are suitable for is teaching. Why read Shakespeare or interesting book that just came when there is
    test to be aced? Most interesting creative students I have come across are the ones who have mix of grades some A’s, some B’s
    some C’s.

  • Dan King

    Colleges are less accountable if they go test-optional. Nobody can sue them for accepting somebody with lower test scores. Like everybody else, colleges want as much control over their fates as possible.

    Also, this article confuses cause and effect. Do people do well on tests because they are rich? Or rather, are good test takers more likely to earn lots of money? The data don’t inform, but I suspect the causal arrow goes both ways. So I doubt that dropping test scores will much affect student diversity.

  • Ed

    College is not the level to make things more equal. By encouraging unprepared students to enroll in college because of their background helps no one. It has a great potential to actually harm such a student who might take out loans but never complete a degree or earn enough to service the debt.

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