SAT test validity

Test Validity


When SAT’s were first made, they were used for assessing white middle class males who attended public and private schools. Since then, the SAT’s have been used to assess students’ ability to succeed in a college academic program. The use of this test to predict how a student will do during their four years of college has caused the test to loose its validity.

            In middle class white males the correlation of the SAT score and first year of college grade point average is high. In other words, it is a fairly good predictor of a white, middle class, male’s performance for the first year of college. After the first year, the test does not predict how they will do in the next three years or how successful they will be in the working world.

            For females and people of other ethnic groups, the SAT is not as good of a predictor for a students ability to succeed in the first year of college and has almost no correlation with the grades the student receives in the next three years or how well they will do in the work field.

The test also relies on the student understanding the English language fully. This gives students whose first language was English an advantage on the test. This could be one of the factors that causes the skewed results between ethnic groups.

            Although the SAT’s have struggled to keep up with the changing world, the popularity of the test for being one of the major aspects of getting into college is still overestimating the test’s ability to predict how the applicant will do. The reason that the test is not a good predictor is because it only measures the student’s basic abilities. It does not take into account foreign languages that the student has learned, any advanced math, English, writing, creative, or science skills, or any advanced problem solving skills. The lack of the test’s ability to test advanced skills could be the reason that it does not predict later years in college, or the students ability to succeed in the working world.

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