Drum roll, please.
The College Board has recently released details of a new, revised, and, potentially, improved SAT. In a horrendously long and frightfully dull 211-page PDF file, the College Board divulged details of the upcoming SAT that will be introduced to the stressful, acne-prone, nail-biting world of college hopefuls in the spring of 2016.
The new layout of the test shows off a slimmer, trimmer SAT: instead of a grueling three hours and forty-five minutes of examination, the new SAT will be three hours long. These three hours of testing will include a 65-minute critical reading section with 52 questions, a 35-minute written language test with 44 questions, and an 80-minute math section with 57 questions.
In addition to those three bubble-filling, brain-straining, will-draining hours of examination, there will be an optional 50-minute essay at the end. A question that arises from this new format is: why would anyone voluntarily partake in an additional 50 minutes of testing?
In addition to being a shorter test, the new SAT will lack the obscure vocabulary words that many students have spent hours struggling to memorize, using every medium from flashcards ripped from the back of their SAT-prep book to websites on the dark fringes of the internet. Less known vocabulary words, such as dilettante—defined by dictionary.com as “a person who takes up an art, activity, or subject merely for amusement, especially in a desultory or superficial way”—and traduce—to speak unfavorably of someone—will disappear from the new test.
The innovative and fresh SAT, according to the New York Times has been commended by many college admissions officers for its, “effort to align the test with what students should be learning in high school.” It looks like, in theory, this new SAT will actually be doing its job as a test: it will actually be assessing knowledge that high school students are supposed to have. So, what has the current SAT been doing?
Whatever the new SAT looks like, a test is still a test, but, it really can’t get much worse than it is now… Right?