Following the lead of many other standardized college admissions tests, the SAT will officially be moving online in the coming months, amid the global outbreak of the coronavirus (COVID-19). The College Board, which is the not-for-profit organization that administers and organizes the SAT, announced today (April 15) plans to move the admissions exam online.
“We know students and educators are worried about how the coronavirus may disrupt the college admissions process, and we want to do all we can to help alleviate that anxiety during this very demanding time,” College Board CEO David Coleman said in the announcement. “Our first principle with the SAT and all our work must be to keep families and students safe. The second principle is to make the SAT as widely available as possible for students who wish to test, regardless of the economic or public health circumstances.”
The SAT has been canceling scheduled exams for the past couple of months and announced just yesterday (April 14) it would cancel its June test. “The College Board will ensure students have opportunities to take the SAT to make up for the lost administrations this spring, giving them opportunities to show their strengths and continue on the path to college,” the College Board release said.
COLLEGE BOARD ADDING SAT TESTING DATES AND SCHOOL LOCATIONS
The first steps, however, will be offering more testing opportunities — both at testing locations and schools — this fall. “If it’s safe from a public health standpoint, there will be weekend SAT administrations every month through the end of the calendar year, beginning in August,” the College Board’s statement said. In addition to the regularly scheduled test dates of August 29, October 3, November 7, and December 5, the SAT will also be scheduled for a date in September. SAT exams will also be administered more regularly within schools starting this fall, the announcement said. “Almost all of College Board state partners and many of its district partners have expressed interest in providing SAT administrations during the school day later this fall,” the announcement stated, noting more details would be coming in the next few weeks.
But in case the coronavirus pandemic lasts into the fall and schools are unable to go back to normal, the College Board said it’s also preparing to create an exam students can take online. “In the unlikely event that schools do not reopen this fall, the College Board will provide a digital SAT for home use, much as the organization is delivering digital exams for three million Advanced Placement (AP) students this spring,” the announcement said. “As with at-home AP Exams, the College Board would ensure that at-home SAT testing is simple; secure and fair; accessible to all; and valid for use in college admissions.”
EMPHASIS ON MOST VULNERABLE POPULATIONS
The College Board emphasized its desire to work with students and families that are most vulnerable, have the fewest resources, and are hit hardest by the spread of the coronavirus.
“Our commitment to students is to give them as many opportunities as we can to show their strengths to admissions officers, while relying on the guidance of public health officials,” Coleman added. “Throughout, we’ll continue to place a special focus on students benefitting from fee waivers and those requiring accommodations.”