Here's What the New SAT Will Look Like


Nearly a year after the College Board’s announcement that the SAT would be undergoing a significant redesign, College Board President David Coleman recently revealed more information about what we can expect to see on the new SAT®. Here are the major changes:

The first new SAT will be administered in spring 2016.

The redesigned exam will be divided into three sections:

Evidence-Based Reading and WritingMath, and the Essay. The Essay section is optional, though many selective colleges are likely to make it an admissions requirement.

The Evidence-Based Reading and Writing section will abandon sentence completions and “rare” vocabulary definitions, instead asking students to interpret the meaning of words based on the context of the passage in which they appear. Students will study source documents from a broad range of disciplines, and on some questions, will be asked to select the quotation from the text that supports the answer they have chosen. Every exam will include a passage from one of the nation’s “founding documents,” (e.g., the Declaration of Independence, the U.S. Constitution) or from one of the important discussions of such texts (e.g. Martin Luther King Jr.'s “I Have a Dream speech”).

The Math section will require students to analyze data, charts, and graphs in order to solve problems grounded in real-world contexts. It will cover three major areas: linear equations; complex equations or functions; and ratios, percentages and proportional reasoning.

The Essay section will appear at the end of the test rather than the beginning. In it, students will read a passage and explain how the author builds an argument, supporting their claims with evidence from the passage. The essay prompt will be shared in advance and remain consistent; only the passage itself will change from test to test. Students will have 50 minutes to complete the essay.

The SAT will be scored on a 1600-point scale: 800 points for the Evidence-Based Reading and Writing section and 800 points for the Math section. Essay scores will be reported separately.

Points will no longer be deducted for incorrect answers.

The SAT will be offered in print and, at selected locations, on computer.

You can find more details about the new version of the test at the College Board website. The College Board is planning to release more information about the new test, including example questions and text passages, on April 16, 2014. We’re keeping an eye on all developments and will share new information with you as it becomes available.

So, what does this mean for me?

If you’re a student or the parent of a student, you’re probably wondering how all this will affect you and how Elite is preparing for the upcoming changes.

If you are in the class of 2014, 2015, or 2016, you’ll take the current version of the SAT, and the new changes to the SAT will not affect you. If you will be graduating from high school in 2017, you will have the opportunity to take either the current version, the redesigned version, or both.

No matter when you’ll be taking the SAT, here’s the good news...

We’ve got you covered.

Over the past 27 years, Elite has acquired a wealth of expert knowledge and experience in creating the most effective curriculum to prepare college-bound students to succeed on the SAT.

We successfully met the challenge of developing a system of lessons and practice tests to reflect the changes in the SAT in 1994 and more recently in 2005. We’re confident that we will be able once again to swiftly adapt our curriculum and teaching methods to reflect the new changes to the SAT.

One of major goals of the College Board, as stated on its website, is to create a redesigned SAT that focuses on the “knowledge and skills that current research shows are most essential for college and career readiness and success.”

At Elite, we’re excited about these new changes and applaud the College Board's efforts to create a more transparent, accessible, and relevant exam. Elite's curriculum has never been about picking up tips and tricks or simply beating the test. For years, we've taken an “evidence-based reasoning” approach to reading comprehension and persuasive writing, and have taught core math knowledge and reasoning skills rather than having students simply memorize formulas to be used on the test and then forgotten.

Elite’s focus is on developing fundamental academic skills that prepare students not only for college entrance exams, but for life.

Rest assured that our trained teachers and counselors will be ready to guide students through every step of their journey with the most up-to-date information available and to offer courses specifically tailored to the exams that best fit their plans.

If you have questions or comments about the new changes to the SAT, please do not hesitate to contact your local Elite branch.

Posted on March 6, 2014 and filed under SAT, Resources.