The College Board did not react to a request for touch upon the Yale announcement

The College Board did not react to a request for touch upon the Yale announcement

Dropping the SAT Essay

Yale follows Harvard in ending requirement that students complete writing part of SAT or ACT. University of north park makes similar move, leaving only 25 colleges utilizing the requirement. More colleges go test optional.

Yale University last week notified counselors who work with twelfth grade students that the university will not any longer require applicants to accomplish the SAT essay or the ACT writing test.

A memo Yale delivered to counselors said the university wanted to result in the application process easier on those who make the SAT or ACT during school hours. Those administrations frequently usually do not give students time for the writing test, so students had to register for the test another time for you to complete the writing test.

The move comes 90 days after Harvard University announced that it was making the SAT essay or ACT writing test optional. Harvard’s announcement noted that its applicants submit essays as part of their applications, so writing remains a part that is crucial of application process.

While the moves by institutions such as Harvard and Yale capture attention, they reflect a more disinclination that is general of leaders toward the writing tests regarding the SAT and ACT. The Princeton Review, which tracks how many colleges require the test, now identifies only 25 institutions which do so. Those that have already dropped the necessity include Columbia and Cornell Universities, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and also the University of Pennsylvania.

The University of north park also recently announced it would no longer require the SAT essay or ACT writing test. Stephen Pultz, assistant vice president for enrollment management at north park, said via email that “we decided the writing sections are not reliable measures for placement purposes, which can be the way we originally envisioned their use. We’ve had better success using the other chapters of the exams, Advanced Placement exams, and twelfth grade curriculum and grades.”

The faculty Board first started offering an essay in the SAT in 2005. But many writing experts were highly critical of this format, noting on top of other things that it failed to judge whether statements were factually correct. Les Perelman, an MIT writing professor, famously coached students on how to write ludicrous essays that would receive scores that are high.

In 2014, the faculty Board announced revisions to your SAT


With substantial changes to your essay, including the use of writing passages to make test takers to cite evidence for opinions inside their essays.

Generally, critics regarding the first form of the writing test agreed that the version that is new better, but some continued to question whether or not the writing test had enough value to justify leading students to prepare for and take it. Some advocates for the essay hoped the changes would lead more colleges to count on it as part of the admissions process. But the news from Harvard and Yale, additionally the not enough interest in adding the writing test as a requirement, shows that this isn’t happening.

On its blog, Princeton Review said after Harvard’s decision that the essays should be eliminated from the SAT and ACT. While they are theoretically optional, many students feel pressure to take them (and get ready for them), and even though a really small quantity of colleges actually utilize the scores.

“While over 70 percent of students using the SAT and more than 50 percent taking the ACT opt in to the essay, not really 2 percent of colleges require an essay score,” your blog post says. “Students and taxpayers are sending tens of millions of dollars to the College Board’s and ACT’s coffers and don’t seem to be anything that is getting of it except that yet another source of anxiety when it comes to college applications. It really is time for the SAT and ACT essays to go.”

While Yale still requires applicants to take either the SAT or ACT for the nonwriting areas of the exams, more colleges continue steadily to announce that they’re going test optional. One of the colleges in recent weeks announcing these policies are Concordia University (St. Paul), Prescott College and Rider University.