Redesigned SAT: Eight Key Changes

Nov 25, 2014 by speakeasy | SAT Prep, Study Tips, Test Prep, Tutoring


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In March, the College Board announced a major overhaul of the SAT. Beginning in the Spring of 2016, the SAT will revert to its original 1600 point scale. What does this mean? How will it effect your student? Here’s what you need to know about the redesigned SAT.

When the College Board decided to overhaul the SAT, they examined the best available evidence indicating the fundamental prerequisites in reading, writing, language and math for college and career readiness. Basically, there will be real world applications of reading and math. According to College Board president, David Coleman, the redesigned SAT will be “focused and useful and more open than ever before” better reflecting what students have learned in high school and what they will need for college readiness and success.

The redesigned SAT has eight key changes:

Relevant Words in Context
Vocabulary will no longer be words students have never heard and may never hear again. Now the SAT will focus on relevant words and their meaning derived from the context of the passage in which they appear.

Evidence-Based Reading and Writing
Students will be asked to demonstrate their ability to interpret and support their answers using evidence found in specific parts of a passage.

Essay Analyzing a Source
The focus of the Essay section will be on the students ability to read a passage and explain how the author builds an argument to persuade an audience. They will have to support their claims with evidence from the passage.

Math Focused on Three Key Areas
The Math section will focus on three key areas: Problem Solving and Data Analysis, the Heart of Algebra, and the Passport of Advanced Math. These are core math areas students can study in depth and master prior to the SAT.

Problems Grounded in Real-World Contexts
Students will analyze a wide range of sources that they are likely to encounter in science, social studies and other majors. They will be asked questions directly related to work performed in college.

Analysis in Science and Social Studies
Students will be asked to analyze both text and data that will pertain to real world issues and topics. They will be given texts and graphics to compare information and solve problems.

Founding Documents and Great Global Conversation
Students will encounter an excerpt from America’s founding documents, such as the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and the Federalists Paper. They will be asked to reflect upon the passage and what is important for not only college but citizenship here and around the world.

No Penalty for Wrong Answers
Students will be given points only for correct answers. Encouraging students to choose the best answer for every problem.

How will this effect your high school student? It really depends on when your student is taking the SAT’s. It will get tricky for the class of 2017 but Team Tutor can help your high schooler prep for the new redesigned SAT!

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