The college application process is a very stressful time for high school seniors. It’s expensive, time consuming and difficult for many. Writing an essay that helps strangers decide whether or not a student is the “right fit” for their school, along with transcripts and standardized test grades may not be the best way to evaluate any specific student. Some colleges have begun to move away from requiring students to report their SAT scores, but this should be more widespread across the country. Students should not be required to report their standardized test scores to any college if they do not believe it represents them well as a student.
The SAT is an intense test that takes up three hours when the essay is included. For many, performing well on these types of tests is difficult, and they may receive scores that underestimate their intelligence. When it comes to judging a student academically, their high school transcript gives much more valuable information. Final class grades show a pattern of how a student performs over time, whether or not they seem to put effort into all their classes, and whether or not they are invested into their school work.
Tests like the SAT also don’t directly test students on all of the subjects they learn in school. By only asking questions revolving around math and English, the test cannot evaluate how much knowledge a student has about science or history topics. While math and English are important for all students, it is not everything that a student needs to succeed in life. For example, students looking to major in artistic fields may not perform well on a test such as the SAT, but it does not tell anything about their artistic ability.
In short, the SAT and other standardized tests do not provide a full picture of who a college application is as a student. Their high school transcript and letters of recommendation from teachers provide much more valuable information when it comes to evaluating a student. Students are more than just a number, and therefore a number should not be used to examine their intelligence.