Test Prep (All Articles)

The "New" SAT

Unless you live on a planet circling Alpha Centauri, you have no doubt heard about the dramatic changes to that venerable gatekeeper of higher education, the SAT. Speaking of those three letters (“SAT"), I discovered something oddly interesting. I wanted to check the College Board's (CB) site to see if these changes had any effect on the actual name of the SAT. It has undergone some changes in the past. It was once known as the Scholastic Aptitude Test for many years. Then, after a lot of criticism about what the test actually accomplished, it became the Scholastic Assessment Test, which is what it goes by these days.

Getting back to that oddly interesting point I mentioned, I checked the CB's site to see how they were referring to the SAT in light of all these cataclysmic changes. What I found was a ton of “SAT" references but not a single mention of the “Scholastic Assessment Test." This suggests two scenarios to me. First, and in keeping with their royal attitude, the College Boarders may feel that the test's brand is so strong that they don't need to waste time explaining what “SAT" stands for. “How could anyone (except, perhaps, an Alpha Centaurian) not know what the SAT is?" the CB may rhetorically ask.

A second possibility may be that the CB is a bit hesitant to cling to its belief that the SAT actually does “assess" anything at all, other than the test takers ability to pay the registration fee. Thus, the CB rests on its hearty laurels and just uses the tried-and-true designation, SAT. Incidentally, for all you out there reading this, if you can find a reference to the “Scholastic Assessment Test" anywhere on the College Board site, please use the comments section below to post a URL of any page that does mention the full name of the test. Just call me curious.

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