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Sewanee drops ACT, SAT requirement

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  • Sewanee drops ACT, SAT requirement

    http://www.tfponline.com/news/2009/mar/ ... lts/?local

    I've always thought standardized tests meant little in predicting a student's ability to do college work. But nobody has had the balls to say so. Credit to the University of the South for giving the boot to these two meaningless tests.

  • #2
    Once upon a time, they had a boarding school at Sewanee. My dad and his brothers went there for high school.

    We visited on one of our cross country road trips, it's a really pretty campus.

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    • #3
      A high SAT score doesn't guarantee college success. But I wouldn't say it's "meaningless." It's an IQ test. If you score high it means you can cognitively function at a different level than the majority who take it.

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      • #4
        Re: Sewanee drops ACT, SAT requirement

        Originally posted by BillVol
        http://www.tfponline.com/news/2009/mar/18/sewanee-drops-use-act-sat-results/?local

        I've always thought standardized tests meant little in predicting a student's ability to do college work. But nobody has had the balls to say so. Credit to the University of the South for giving the boot to these two meaningless tests.
        I do think tests give you a more complete picture than grades alone. I think grades are more important than test scores. Some people don't test well, but in college, it seems like grades are way more test-oriented, at least for most majors. So if someone really struggles on the SAT/ACTs, they are generally going to have a tougher time of it in college. But if I was an admissions officer, that would just make me factor in the essays and recommendations that much more, plenty of kids who aren't the strongest test takers do just fine in college.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by polevaultpower
          Once upon a time, they had a boarding school at Sewanee. My dad and his brothers went there for high school.

          We visited on one of our cross country road trips, it's a really pretty campus.
          I believe it's still there. Although maybe it's a different school than your dad and uncles attended.

          http://www.sasweb.org/home/

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          • #6
            Originally posted by BillVol
            Originally posted by polevaultpower
            Once upon a time, they had a boarding school at Sewanee. My dad and his brothers went there for high school.

            We visited on one of our cross country road trips, it's a really pretty campus.
            I believe it's still there. Although maybe it's a different school than your dad and uncles attended.

            http://www.sasweb.org/home/
            Yeah it's different now. I don't remember the whole story, but I know there were a lot of hurt feelings about the way things went down. When I went with my dad it was the first time he had been back. I think maybe it was more of a military school when he was there. *Looking at their history page* The school in its current format was established in 1981.

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            • #7
              Re: Sewanee drops ACT, SAT requirement

              Originally posted by polevaultpower
              I do think tests give you a more complete picture than grades alone. I think grades are more important than test scores.
              I'm not sure grades are more important for colleges who have to compare students from HS's with very different grading scales. Having said this, the SAT is also flawed as some students are hyper prepped for it and others not.

              Originally posted by polevaultpower
              Some people don't test well, but in college, it seems like grades are way more test-oriented, at least for most majors.
              Agreed, and this is a problem. I often see people fail tests who I thought had a good grasp of the material. One solution is to give open ended tests so you're not testing how efficient a student is at taking the test but their knowledge. Another tactic is to have different question styles to accommodate as many learning styles as possible. A mixture of mutlichoice, short answer and interpretation style questions seems to help. Any other ideas?

              Originally posted by polevaultpower
              plenty of kids who aren't the strongest test takers do just fine in college.
              I see this frequently, especially in grad school.

              There is one common theme I see, mature students always do well. I'm not sure why but my guess is they are hungry to make the most of their education and possibly more efficient.

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              • #8
                A Tale of Two Daughters:
                The eldest, a whiz at testing off the charts, attended public schools, was a 3.9+ student throughout HS, college and Law School. ( Had a B in a Home Economics course in HS)
                The younger, not a good test taker, attended highly regarded private HS,was a 3.9+ student throughout HS, college and grad school earning a MS in Geology/Geophysics.(I believe her achilles was an advanced Calculus course)

                Not a very good evaluation of the value of either testing or public vs. private school
                Brain power and discipline will prevail.

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                • #9
                  This is a growing trend across all types of colleges/universities in the USA. My institution still requires SAT/ACT, but we're talking about eliminating it as a requirement to be considered for admission.

                  Here's a recent list of ACT/SAT optional schools (of all types):

                  http://www.fairtest.org/university/optional

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                  • #10
                    Wouldn't the list of schools that do use ACT be shorter?

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by lonewolf
                      Wouldn't the list of schools that do use ACT be shorter?
                      It seems like most schools take both. The ACT is really big in the midwest. They think the SAT is biased to the coasts.

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