College entrance exams. Rant. Kids

College entrance exams. Rant. Kids these days are expected to take the PSAT in their junior year to qualify for National Merit honors. SAT in the spring of their junior year for the first time. Followed by prep work, and then the SAT again in the fall of their senior year. AP tests for appropriate classes at the end of their junior year, which could mean as many as 4 more tests. SAT II tests in 3 subject areas at the end of their junior year, followed by retesting in their senior year if they feel appropriate. Some people recommend the ACT test as well as it biases in slightly different directions.

Issue A. The amount of time and work spent on these tests is huge. And if you want to do any prep at all, it really eats up time.

Issue B. The notion that a small set of numbers somehow measures a person’s potential is of course nuts.

Each of these tests also has all kinds of scoring options — extra cost options for faster score reporting, more detailed reporting.

Issue C. The system explicitly favors higher income families — retesting, prep, scoring options all add up. I guess I shouldn’t complain as this biases the system towards us but it is not right.