The New SAT-Presentation on January 25, 2017

  • District 211 hosted a Community Education session about the new SAT exam on January 25, 2017 at William Fremd High School. The session was repeated on February 1, at Schaumburg High School. Over 350 parents, students and community members attended. The presentation included information about different College Board assessments and test preparation activities for not only juniors (11th graders), but all students. Details about the sessions are available in the links below.

  • Required State of Illinois Testing

    When is the required State-sponsored SAT given and to whom?
    All 11th grade
     high school students are required to take the SAT.  No registration is necessary for the state-sponsored test.

    Is there any cost to the student for the State-sponsored SAT?
    There is no cost to the student for taking the State-sponsored SAT.  However, students taking the SAT on a national test day through the College Board must register and pay for that test administration.

    Does the State-sponsored SAT include the essay section of the SAT?
    Yes.  All 11th grade
     students taking the State-sponsored SAT will complete the essay section of the test.  The essay is an optional component for students who elect to take the SAT on a national test day.

  • SAT Test Format and Content

    What are the key features of the new SAT exam?
    The College Board has categorized eight key components of the new SAT.  They are:

    • Words in Context
    • Command of Evidence
    • Essay Analyzing a Source
    • Math that Matters Most
    • Problems Grounded in Real-World Contexts
    • Analysis in Science and History/Social Studies
    • U.S. Founding Documents and the Great Global Debate
    • No penalty for Guessing

    Details about each of these key exam features are available here.

    Are the changes seen in the newly redesigned SAT assessment reflected in the other College Board assessments in the SAT Suite (i.e. PSAT 8/9, PSAT 10)?
    Yes.  The SAT Suite of Assessments includes redesigned assessments at multiple grade levels, all vertically aligned to provide you and your students with actionable feedback about their college and career readiness from eighth grade through graduation.  Specific details about assessment alignment are available here.

    Is the new SAT format used exclusively in Illinois?
    No.  The redesign is offered nationally and globally.

    Is the new SAT a paper-pencil test?  Or is it taken online?
    It is currently only offered paper-pencil, but pilots of online testing will begin this fall.

    Can I see sample questions from the new SAT?
    Yes.  The College Board has published four complete practice tests and many sample questions.  Click here to access sample questions from each area of the test, including the optional essay.

    How does the SAT format differ from the format of the ACT?
    The SAT contains three sections: Reading, Mathematics, and Writing and Language. The ACT contains four sections: Reading, Mathematics, English, and Science. Both exams also have an optional essay. Each section has a different format on the ACT compared to the SAT.

    Do SAT subject-specific exams still exist?
    Yes.  There are 20 individual subject-specific tests available.  We recommend that a student check
     with specific colleges and universities to see if the schools require scores from any of these exams.  Detailed information about subject-specific tests is available here.

  • Performance Benchmark and Scoring

    What are the performance benchmarks established for each assessment in the SAT Suite?
    Each exam in the SAT Suite of Assessments has its own unique set of college and career readiness benchmarks for evidenced-based reading and writing and mathematics.

    Grade Level Assessment Readiness Benchmarks
    Evidenced-based Reading & Writing Mathematics
    8 PSAT 8/9 390 430
    9 PSAT 8/9 410 450
    10 PSAT 10 430 480
    11 SAT 460 510

    More details about these benchmarks and their development are available here.

    How do students receive and access their test results?
    Students access their score reports using their College Board account.

    Does the College Board’s concordance table compare scores from the newly designed SAT to the ACT or the older version of the SAT and the ACT?
    Concordance tables are available to show an estimated score on the old SAT based on your score from the new SAT and from the ACT to the new SAT.  More details about the set of concordance tables are available here.

  • College Board Account

    How does a student create a College Board account?  Which assessments are linked to this account?
    Students create College Board accounts using the online portal available here.
    Score reports from the following assessments are available using the student’s College Board account:

    • PSAT 8/9
    • PSAT 10
    • SAT
    • Advanced Placement

    What information is available in the College Board account?
    A College Board account provides a direct portal for students to register for SAT exams, access score reports from PSAT 8/9, PSAT 10, PSAT/NMSQT, SAT and Advanced Placement exams, update the list of schools that will receive test score reports, and manage email reminders about important College Board events.

    What measures does the College Board take to protect a student’s private information?
    The complete set of the College Board’s site terms and conditions as well as privacy policies
     is available here.

  • Test Preparation and Khan Academy

    What is the difference between the PSAT 8/9, PSAT 10, PSAT/NMSQT, and SAT?
    The PSAT 8/9, PSAT 10, and SAT are all part of the SAT Suite of Assessments, an aligned group of exams that measure student achievement in the areas of evidence-based reading and writing and mathematics.  Details about the SAT Suite of Assessments can be found here.

    The PSAT/NMSQT is an alternate version of the PSAT 10.  The PSAT/NMSQT is used exclusively for the purposes of the National Merit Scholarship Competition.  The PSAT 10 is used by High School District 211 to gauge students’ academic achievement and growth.

    When do students take the PSAT 8/9, PSAT 10, PSAT/NMSQT, and SAT?
    The PSAT 8/9 and PSAT 10 are District-sponsored exams.  There is no need to register or pay for these exams.  Students take the PSAT 8/9 in the fall of the 8th grade year as a placement exam for freshmen year coursework.   Students take the PSAT 8/9 again, in the spring of freshman year, to verify academic achievement and growth.  The PSAT 10 is taken in the spring of sophomore year to demonstrate further illustration of academic growth.

    Students may choose to take the PSAT/NMSQT in the fall of the 11th grade year.  This optional assessment exclusively provides opportunities for scholarship awards associated with the National Merit Scholarship Program.  Students electing to take the PSAT/NMSQT must register and pay for the exam.

    Students take the State-sponsored SAT in the spring of junior year to satisfy a State of Illinois requirement and to receive a valid college entrance score.  There is no need to register or pay for this exam.  Students have the opportunity to register and pay for an SAT exam on any national test date sponsored by the College Board.  National SAT test dates are available here.

    What is the recommended timeline for students to begin preparing for the SAT?
    The College Board recommends students focus on their high school coursework and practice for the SAT using the Khan Academy, as opposed to other specific test preparation activities.  The College Board offers a 16-week guide to the SAT to help high school juniors create a plan prior to sitting for the SAT for the first time. The 16-week study plan is available here.

    Can you describe the Khan Academy test preparation resource?  How do students access the Khan Academy?  Is there a cost to using this service?
    The Khan Academy is a free resource available to all students preparing to take the SAT.  Students must establish an individual Khan Academy account and can link that account with their College Board account to establish a personalized SAT practice plan.  Information about linking a Khan Academy account and a College Board account is available here.

    What is the recommended sequence of high school coursework prior to a student taking the SAT?

    The College Board does not have a recommended sequence, but believes that challenging coursework, including Advanced Placement (AP) courses, can be beneficial to preparing students for college level work.

  • College Admission

    How does my student send SAT scores to colleges and universities?
    A student has the opportunity to send scores to a maximum of four (4) specific colleges or universities when taking the SAT.  These schools are indicated when registering for the test or while completing the pre-test information on exam day.  Additionally, a student can update the list of schools that will receive SAT scores by accessing the student’s College Board account within nine (9) days of taking the SAT.  Updates made in the online portal will override the choices made while taking the SAT. More information about sending test scores is available here.

    Additional score reports, beyond the original four, may be sent to other schools at any time.  The College Board charges a fee for these additional score reports. Full details about scoring services and fees are available here.

    Specifically, which SAT scores do colleges and universities receive?
    Although most students focus on their total SAT score and their two section scores, a full SAT score report includes fifteen (15) separate scores.  The College Board sends all fifteen (15) scores to the colleges and universities indicated by the student.   Details about these different scores and their ranges are available here.

    If a student retakes the SAT, will colleges and universities accept a new higher score for admissions purposes?
    We recommend that a student check
     with specific colleges and universities to see how the schools treat multiple score reports from individual students.

    Do colleges and universities honor “super scoring” with the SAT?
    Super scoring is a method used by some schools to combine the highest individual score components from separate administrations of the SAT to create a single test score reflecting the best outcomes from a student’s testing experiences.  The decision to “super score” is up to the specific college or university.  We recommend that a student check
     with specific colleges and universities to see if the schools practice super scoring.

    Which test should my student take to obtain a college entrance score – the SAT or the ACT?
    The State-sponsored SAT will provide a valid score for college entrance purposes.  Students may choose to take the ACT in addition to the State-sponsored SAT.  We recommend that a student check 
     with specific colleges and universities to see if the schools prefer scores from either of these entrance exams.

    Do all colleges and universities accept SAT scores for admission?  Or will a student need to take the ACT as well?
    Most colleges and universities will accept scores from both the SAT and the ACT.  We recommend that a student  check
     with specific colleges and universities to see if the schools prefer scores from either of these entrance exams.