Students Are Not Test Scores

The SAT and ACT should not be part of the college admission process

Danielle Villarreal, Opinion Staff Writer

With March 4 just around the corner, juniors are preparing to take their first SAT here at Bell High School in their homeroom classes.

This can be overwhelming for students, since SAT and ACT scores are an important factor in the college admissions process. 

These tests, however, should not be used to determine a student’s potential because they simply cannot measure the intelligence of individuals. 

The SAT is an aptitude test that requires convergent thinking, which is simply coming up with one correct answer, even though in real life there is more than one way to approach obstacles. 

These single answer tests, however, cannot determine a student’s creativity, which careers in business, politics, science, filmmaking, architecture, design, and marketing require. 

“My SAT score is low but I don’t think my intelligence is. I have other talents and strengths in certain subjects that my SAT score just doesn’t show,” a Bell High student said. 

Students from low-income families are also placed at a disadvantage, since they cannot afford private tutors and additional materials to help them study. 

“In each of the three parts of the SAT, the lowest average scores were those with less than $20,000 in family income, and the highest averages were those with more than $200,000 in income, and the gaps are significant,” according to the Inside Higher Ed website. 

Students who perform poorly in the SAT may fear that they ruined their chances of getting accepted to a college of their choice. However, it is important to know that these test scores alone do not determine a student’s success in college. 

In fact, many universities have expressed their support for getting rid of SAT scores from the application process. 

“The chancellors of UC Berkeley and UC Santa Cruz, along with the University of California’s chief academic officer, say they support dropping the SAT and ACT as an admission requirement,” according to the Los Angeles Times. 

Universities also use a holistic approach when reviewing applications, including an individual’s high school grades, extracurriculars, and personal statements, which tell far more about a student than a mere test score. 

So juniors should try their best on test day, but remember not to let one test score discourage them from pursuing their academic goals.