Dumbing Down SAT Tests So More Hapless Students Go To Colleges, More Money For Schools, More Debt For Students

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College Board: SAT Scores Going Down As GPAs Rise which is due entirely to grade inflation.  The graph above shows how grade inflation is out of control.  50% of students taking the SAT are ‘white’ (European) and 10% are Asian and both groups have a GPA of A+ to A- of over 50%.  There is no bell curves here!  The Huffington Post has a story about the gap of ethnic SAT scores and the wonderful solution to fix this: namely, dumbing down the SAT very greatly so more people can pass!

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The screen shot above is the original headline of the story.  But someone changed the header of the story inside to this:  2014 SAT Scores ‘Flat And Stagnant’ Ahead Of Major Test Redesign which has no connection to the race issue even though it is obvious when reading the story:

 

 The College Board, which this year announced plans for a major SAT redesign, points to the test scores as a sign that American education needs renewed rigor and resources. “Offering the same old test in the face of lasting problems is just not good enough,” said David Coleman, president of the College Board.

 

The class of 2014 included 1.67 million students who took the SAT, an increase from 1.65 million who took it the previous year. This year’s test-takers included 793,986 minorities, compared with 762,511 the previous year. Overall, 42.6 percent scored high enough to reach the College Board’s “College and Career Readiness Benchmark” — a number a College Board press release said has “been virtually unchanged over the last several years.”

 

What ‘problems’ are caused by the present SAT?  Why, few blacks or Hispanics pass the test!  The test is a way of discovering if someone is capable of handling college courses.  Schools already have dealt with this ‘problem’ by teaching non-credit earning courses that are high school or junior high levels and charging students tremendous sums for this service.

 

Even with this going on and most students taking these remedial courses still failing college, they want to open the doors to even more students who are obviously incapable of studying higher education because they couldn’t handle much simpler, easier levels.

 

The Huffington Post article does mention that 85% of black students taking the SAT fail. 76% of Latinos fail, too.  What is worse: 69% of black students graduate from high school and the vast majority of these successful students fail the SAT!  National high school graduation rates at historic high, but disparities still exist – The Washington Post:

 

It is not unusual for major cities to experience a higher dropout rate and lower graduation rate than states. One study found the graduation rate for the class of 2005 in the nation’s 50 largest cities was 53 percent, compared with 71 percent in the suburbs.
 

Official statistics had long overstated the nation’s high school graduation rates, with the Education Department putting the average above 80 percent and some states reporting rates above 90 percent. States used dozens of different reporting methods, with some figuring into their rates those dropouts who later earned the equivalency certificate known as a General Educational Development diploma, or GED.

 

Many students getting the GED do this because they are incapable of sitting at lectures and doing school work.  This translates, many times, into an inability to do this in college which leads to a bad outcome, that is, no degree.  In addition, since more and more students are minorities and the white Europeans, due mainly to birth control and a desire to have more wealth with fewer children, the statistics showing poor SAT and graduation levels means fewer students for colleges to exploit.  So, the SAT folk have been told by the colleges who are seeking more money from students via government debt, to dumb down the SAT to get more victims. So they are doing exactly that:

 

The new test will be shorter, the essay will be optional, vocabulary will focus more on academic words and multiple choice questions will have four possible answers, rather than five.

 

Why not hand out crib sheets?  Or simply do away with the SAT entirely?  Of course, it is a private business which makes money so that won’t happen.  But the conflict between ill-prepared, poorly motivated students viewing college as party time on the taxpayer’s dime and the need for the US to keep up its empire via training workers to function properly means probable future collapse of our empire.  Which should surprise no historians who have seen this over and over again.

 

Here is an open admission that this is all about marketing, that is, selling college to people obviously incapable of succeeding in college:

 

The College Board frames this three-part test process as a “Readiness and Success System.” Some experts called it well-intentioned marketing.

 

“They’re making a good social point and it’s too bad that it’s couched in marketing,” said Jeff Strohl, research director for Georgetown University’s Center on Education and the Workforce. “If they could make the same point that there’s a large number of disadvantaged youth in America who could do better with counseling and have higher degrees of academic readiness with social expenditures, that’s a really good statement to make.

 

Except this is all about marketing!  And it is exploitation, not everyone wishing minority students well.  Here is an amusing article:  College costs enforce racial inequality because black students have an average debt of over $24,000.  But this isn’t unusual, this is normal!  What is sad here is the fact that very few blacks entering college, graduate.  The level is less than 25% of all college students who are black, graduate.

 

Wall Street Journal in 2012:  SAT Scores Fall as More Students Take Exam  an earlier WSJ headline:  SAT Scores Fall as Gap Widens; Asians Gain – WSJ which is why the SAT was forced by politicians and the owners of schools to lower standards tremendously.  Making it ridiculously easy to pass is the goal of these vultures who want to monetize learning while producing useless degrees.

 

When I took the SAT back in 1967, we had no idea what it tested, very little information.  Now we have Free SAT Practice Test with answers- Prepare for the SAT and SAT – Essay Prompts by the SAT people, themselves.  We have prep schools for the tests, and all sorts of crutches that enables people to pass while schools make tests easier to pass, too.  I remember when many fewer took the SAT because most state colleges tried to keep students OUT, not in.

 

And there was a high drop out rate in the first two years, mainly, freshman year as schools shed students deliberately because state students paid little to no tuition.  Today, everyone is expected to pay for the schools and thus, retention is the #1 job of professors, not kicking students out of classes due to incapacity to learn or outright disruption of lectures.

 

Here is a video talking about all this with a bad solution: get rid of the professors and have cheap online courses instead where there is near zero interaction between students and anyone teaching them.  This solution is sad.  Human interactions are the most important part of learning anything.  Social isolation destroys the mind, reduces the ability to communicate information over time, leading to an erosion in society and knowledge.

Here on my blog people communicate with each other and I join in the debates because we are learning about the world together and often do not agree about a host of things.  I enjoy debates greatly and most sites online run content free debates due to preventing anyone from dissenting from the group think that passes for ‘debates’.  Many online sites have made debates either hard to read or access or eliminate it entirely.

 

Censorship is common based not on ‘you are a troll’ but rather, ‘How dare anyone have a different point of view.’  Putting up information is verboten at major news sites, mentioning verboten names or topic is forbidden.  Saying ‘Bilderberg’ can get one banned instantly for life from many major websites, for one glaring example.

 

Most people can’t handle real debates.  My most amusing debate in college was this:

 

I was one of the few females in a philosophy class and the professor joked about how women aren’t logical and are too emotional for real debates.  I raised my hand and requested we have a proper, by the rules debate about this issue.  He laughed and agreed with me.  I got to stand up in front of everyone and I clearly said, the issue of this debate is, ‘Who is more emotional when debating, men or women?’

 

I then used all my considerable verbal skills to cleverly get the professor emotionally distraught.  He finally began shouting at me and waving his arms and he was so emotional he didn’t see that I was smiling bigger and bigger the angrier he became.  Suddenly, I raised my arm and announce that I had won the debate.  He got even angrier and said quite loudly, ‘No you did not!’

 

I grinned at him and he suddenly fell silent.  Turned red faced and then realized, I nailed him to the floor.  My eventual husband was sitting there, laughing.  This is how we met.  The professor kindly gave me a high grade for the course and we became friends over time and several glasses of wine.  The thing is, education is all about debates, defending positions from any and all and learning to take in new experiences and have difficult times that shatter one’s  view of the world, over and over again.

 

Can’t do this without interactions that are intense and troubling.  And a weak SAT prepares no one for college, it is a cheat.  Also, the biggest plus of going to college is to get to know each other, that is, networking.  This is key to getting good jobs later.  Just sending out letters to all and sundry is the slowest and hardest way to find jobs.  And getting to know how to behave with others is key to gaining and keeping jobs, obviously.

 


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17 Comments

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17 responses to “Dumbing Down SAT Tests So More Hapless Students Go To Colleges, More Money For Schools, More Debt For Students

  1. melponeme_k

    I got into college just at the beginning of the loan and credit balloon. I remember credit card companies setting up dozens of kiosks trying to get students to sign up.

    College was hard. I wasn’t a great student in HS. But I managed the SAT and got into a CUNY school. Most of Freshman year I spent trying to get out of refresher courses/Core courses because I had taken the AP equivalent in HS. One refresher was speech therapy! One of my professors managed to get me out of that one.

    I graduated college in 4 years but even at that time the average length was 5 years. I did it by loading up on courses and taking extra credit whenever possible. My free time was spent in the library. I did not have time to party. I was amazed that people did. Because of that hard work, I managed to graduate cum laude (would have gotten magna if I hadn’t fought with the head of the dept in my major). My friend graduated summa, I was so jealous.

  2. emsnews

    And this all shows in your comments!

    I went to school for free due to daddy being head of his department. That was pure fun.

    I dropped out before a degree due to three things: my husband, during the summer, discovered he had a dangerous cancer, I found out the same week I was pregnant and the language requirement for graduation was virtually eliminated suddenly at nearly all universities at the same time which destroyed the German departments which directly affected me.

    So I moved to NYC and worked for a German corporation instead, while my husband got proper medical care and he survived. Thank heavens for that.

    I ended up making good money in property development, instead. You never know where you end up. Main thing is: NO SCHOOL DEBTS.

    My daughter got a nearly free education by working for two different universities and taking their courses, graduated and got a good job in her field. My son, on the other hand, had debts to pay off and is, at my advice, paying it off fast, not slowly.

    While looking for work during the Great Depression after the Dumb Bank Collapse, we all had to pay his loans for him so he wouldn’t be kicked into a higher interest rate level.

  3. Luke

    I read [in the daily news or Newsweek] of the ‘Ivy Application Scam’.
    via yaho news,

    My kids are smart, smarter than average but by no means little geniuses. When my oldest received a letter from an Ivy League college “We are writing to ask you to apply at xyz…”, I felt proud.

    Then my daughter explained to me that she’d have to pay $75 to apply and that her chances to get accepted are very low.

    I did the math. If the college gets 20,000 students to apply, they’ll rake in $1.5 million dollars in application fees! Of course, parents want the best for their kids and when an Ivy League college writes “We are asking you to apply”, I think, most parents would get all excited and encourage their child to apply, thinking that their child truly has a shot at getting accepted. The school also included information that if the family’s income is below $60K/year, the student won’t have to pay tuition or room & board.

    The more I think about this, the more ticked off I get. I almost fell for their scam. Of course, scamming people by exploiting their vanity has been around for a long time but I would have never expected this from universities… Several Ivy League schools wrote to my daughter.
    Is scamming smart, middle class students a type of fundraiser for them?

    [answer, duhhhhhh]
    And I will add there are ‘Independent Admission Counselors’ that charge parents 20k or more.

    ΩΩΩ

    ELAINE: Wow. That is a new scam. I am flabbergasted. In my day, if you wanted to apply to a school, you did it yourself, no one sent letters soliciting this. If they were offering a SCHOLARSHIP then yes, this is valid. But sending these letters to innocent kids, pretending they want them is fraud. And charging money to apply? WOW. Never did this in the past.

  4. Luke

    Failing the SAT? Back 20 or more years ago [prior to the first time it was dumbed down] the score was 800/800 maximum.
    What is a ‘failing score’? One could get a low score but how could someone ‘fail’?
    Here is a college grad that got a ‘4’ on an IQ test where the average football player gets ’20’ and a perfect is ’50’. A ‘4’.

    Elaine, please read,

    http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2012/04/03/claiborne-gives-birth-to-a-four-on-the-wonderlic/

  5. DeVaul

    The Industrial Age is coming to an end, so the entire college system, which was built on that age continuing forever, must now find a “reason d’etre”.

    What they teach now will not be useful in the coming Dark Age, and some young people are waking up to that fact despite their idiot parents wanting them to load up on endless debt (which is how they live themselves).

    The outrageous scams are a sign of desperation on the part of the bloated university system, which knows its days are now numbered. The tenured professors and hangers on just want to make it to retirement. They don’t care what happens to the kids stuck with unpayable debts.

    Don’t expect primary school teachers or high school teachers to warn children about this. They are looking to retirement too.

  6. e sutton

    @DeVaul,

    BINGO!

  7. melponeme_k

    @Devaul

    College will go back to being what it originally was in the beginning. A finishing school for the elite.

    It will be back to the days of “Jude The Obscure” for us. If they even allow us to learn how to read.

  8. DeVaul

    That’s a possibility, Mel, but there is also the possibility that the whole college system will be lost entirely as the resources to sustain it disappear from one place after another. Guess our children will find out.

  9. emsnews

    Way back in the good old days, Protestant churches decided all the peasants should learn to read. So they started ‘Sunday Schools’ due to that being the only day off for workers and it was all about learning how to read.

    The elites were FURIOUS about this! Note also it was illegal in the slave states in the US after the ‘revolution’ forbidding teaching slaves to read.

  10. Petruchio

    This commentary serves as yet another reminder of what,imho, is the REAL solution to the Higher Education system in the USA. The solution is to DRAMATICALLY slash taxpayer funding that goes-directly or indirectly-into the wasteful, fraudulent, money looting RACKET that is Higher Ed.. I listened on the local PBS radio station the other day. Forgot the woman’s name, but she worked in the Higher Ed system. The subject was the current state of affairs re Higher Ed. Here’s a quote from her that sticks in my mind: “We have no obligation to the student.” Is that so, honey? Your job likely wouldn’t exist without taxpayer subsidiy, yet you have the gall to go on the public airwaves and basically say, “F#ck you! Students!” This arrogant b#tch thinks she can collect a decent salary AND flip off the group that makes her existence possible. She should be thabkful I’m not in charge. I’d slash University subsidies 60%-and then wait, with baited breath, to see if her and people like her still have jobs. Let these people enter the job market college grads have to face, then let’s interview this “lady” again. I DO think everyone should be able to get a College Degree. It should be affordable and it should be student focused. After all, the students-and their taxpaying parents-are paying the freight so the University system can exist. I also think residents should have priority over non-residents, including and most especially foreign students. It’s just fine and dandy to have Xi from Beijing and students from Singapore in your class, but when budget crunch time comes, the folks who have been paying the bills the longest should get priority. That’s not discrimination, that’s basic fairness.

  11. emsnews

    The problem is, most American students seem to want to party and go to schools that have all sorts of goodies and to avoid learning as much as possible. Then they want a degree which supposedly says they learned something.

    This silly system has to stop, of course, but won’t because there is too much profit in the corrupt system.

  12. Petruchio

    “This silly system has to stop, of course, but won’t because there is too much profit in the corrupt system.” Interesting point. What I wonder about is, when are the PARENTS going to give up on College and say, “It just isn’t worth the cost.” and stop sending their kids to College? It’s a mystery to me why parents–and others who help pay for College-take all of the extreme cost increases lying down? Parents should be out on the streets carrying pitchforks and DEMANDING to get College expenses under control. Obviously, the freeloaders and other sleaze who profit from the current system are not going to jump off the gravy train of their own accord. You are going to have to shove them off.

  13. Christian W

    The fucked up college system is simply a symptom of the fucked up general economy in the US. When the elite get away with day light robbery and looting is rewarded rather than punished of course eventually the other systems will be bent to the same purpose.

  14. emsnews

    Yes. This is the ‘greed is good’ philosophy.

  15. Luke

    There are MANY reasons someone in the 17-29 age group might attend college. They include wanting to learn, not wanting to work and lack of jobs [dodging the greater depression]. Also one reason for higher ed is to keep people OUT of the job market. Can you imagine if compulsory schooling was just for those age 4-14? So much more competition for entry level jobs.
    30? years ago employers did not ask for a college degree for:
    police
    fire
    hotel etc
    and Physical Therapist could get licensed with a Bachelors degree.
    I saw a bizarre ad for a ‘bachelors in dental hygiene’ or something like that recently.
    And ‘for profits’ try to get 30-70K while offering training in ‘self employment’ like
    hypnotherapy
    massage
    personal trainer
    Going in debt to get a certificate. wtf????

  16. emsnews

    Yes, that is what is happening. Jobs that never required a college degree are now demanding this. And yes, it keeps young people out of the job market. The main reason is to pile debt on them as much as possible.

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