New SAT Score Adversity

New SAT Score Adversity

So what’s the hullabaloo about the “Adversity” score in SAT? How will it impact your child’s SAT score and most importantly how will it affect the admission to good colleges for your child?

The Adversity score which is officially called “Overall Disadvantage Level” has been introduced by the College Board to ensure the SAT scores of students are nowcompared with the student’s background also in the mix. A more level playfield so to speak.

Essentially what this means is a high score by a student from a stable and high income family background and a very good school Versus an average score by another student from a low income family and an average school cannot be compared at face value – The student from low income family with average score could have scored higher if he or she had the advantage of a better schooling and means to better tutoring, and probably hasbetter intelligence and ability to excel in a college.

Therefore, the SAT score is not just the product of the intelligence and ability of the student but it is also heavily impacted by the years of schooling and type of neighbourhood the child grows in. Also, a good score by a student from a poorer background is highly commendable given his or her circumstances and should be given an extra weightage by considering the Adversity score. Such a student deserves a chance at a very good college compared to the rest of the students.

That said, there are many critics finding fault with the new Adversity score in SAT saying it could be misused on racial grounds and that it may not really help with changing the ground realities. Some have even gone to the extent of criticising SAT scores themselves and question how effective they are in the selection of deserving students to good colleges.

Nevertheless looks like the Adversity score is here to stay and here are some key details:

  • This new metric forms the core of the “Environmental Context Dashboard” of the College Board
  • It is on a scale of 1 – 100
  • The less privileged you are, the higher your adversity score. So a score higher than 50 implies the student is from a less privileged background or higher Adversity.
  • This score will not be revealed to the students.
  • The Adversity score of each student is given to the colleges directly.
  • The score will not affect the SAT scores of a student
  • The score will add weightage to the selection process and is comparable to normalising the scores of students to make a better assessment.

Why not create a fairer assessment of SAT scores, one that is more comparable and also gives better opportunities to students from less privileged backgrounds?

What do you feel?

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