There is Nothing Standardizing about Standardized Tests
There are many factors that might put students at a disadvantage, from attending low-performing schools and not having the opportunity to engage in extracurricular activities, to coming from a low-income family or being the first in their family to attend college. Finding ways to include this information into life impacting tests, like the SATs, can help level the playing field for students of all backgrounds applying for college.
Higher college admission test scores often correlate with higher family income and education levels, and white and Asian students generally tend to score higher than their Latino or black peers, according to the Atlantic. Wealthy students also enroll in college at the highest rate.
Among recent high school graduates from families earning below $30,000 per year, just 39% enroll in a four-year college, compared to 61% of students from families with an annual income of more than$100,000.
The College Board, which oversees the SAT college entrance exam, is introducing a new tool to help admissions officers measure applicants' level of privilege. The Environmental Context Dashboard is meant to shine a light on students who have demonstrated remarkable resourcefulness to overcome challenges and achieve more with less. A student’s dashboard score is calculated by college admissions officers using 15 categories including the crime rate, poverty levels, education rates of the student’s high school and neighborhood. The score does not factor in the student’s race.