Standardized Testing: The Sat And The Act

1322 words - 5 pages

Standardized testing has played an important role in the college admission decisions. The role of admission exams is always changing and evolving with time. The most prominent exams used are the SAT and the ACT. Their purpose is for gauging student knowledge for placement and possible success rate. Each test is comprised of numerous educational factors to gauge knowledge. The SAT and the ACT derived from other test forms to become what they are today. In addition to being an entrance exam, the grades obtained from these exams are used to formulate statistical information. Knowing that these tests are a requirement for college entry, one wants to do well on the exam(s). With testing tips and early preparation acceptable scores can be achieved.
The SAT and ACT are both consisted of more than one section. The SAT has three sections which are critical reading, mathematics and writing. Each of these sections is divided into more detailed sections. The critical reading part of the SAT consists of comprehension, sentence reading passages, and critical reading passages. The math section on the SAT has questions about numbers and operations, geometry, statistics, probability, and data analysis. The last section of the SAT is writing. The writing section is more than just a written response to a question it consists of multiple choice questions, short essay, and critical reading passages. The ACT, like the SAT, has sections of knowledge within each section. The ACT contains slightly different from those of the SAT. The ACT has four sections: English, math, science and writing. Similar to the SAT each section has subsections. The English portion of the ACT evaluates punctuation, grammar, usage, sentence structure, rhetorical skills, and reading comprehension. The math section has the same information as the SAT plus algebra 1, algebra 2 and geometry. The ACT, unlike the SAT, has a science section. The science section assesses interpretation, analysis, evaluation, reasoning, and problem-solving skills. The ACT writing section is not comprised of sections, like that of the SAT.
The National Center for Educational Statistics and Public Agenda provides statistical information on everyone who takes the test each year. The yearly scores divided into different categories. It is first displaced as a whole average. It can then be seen divided into averages by state, gender, and ethnicity. From all the different statistical charts, one can make inferences about different groups. More women than men finish college, but on average they score lower than men on both the SAT and the ACT. Statistically white score higher than any other ethnicity. I find it disturbing to know that African-Americans as an average score lower than all other races, including the non-English speaking and English as a Second Language Learners. The staggering state scores are interesting to look at, but hard to make and inference about. There are some states as an...

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