College admissions tests will be held online from 2024. Many students waited for this, but not everyone considered all innovations related to SAT digitalization. What does it mean for aspiring college students? Let’s discuss this issue in detail to understand how online SAT will change the admission process.
When Will SAT Become Fully Digital?
Of course, it does not mean that everything will change for a minute. This process will take some time. First of all, the application process should be optimized for SAT digitalization. Thus, some solutions have already been provided. For instance, if the applicant doesn’t have an opportunity to take tests online, the College Board will borrow a laptop or any other device.
It’s also necessary to get feedback from both educators and students to make conclusions and necessary improvements. All these will help make the procedure as comfortable and effective as possible.
What Is the Main Reason for That?
The COVID-19 pandemic undoubtedly transformed the world and every aspect of life. The same is related to higher education. Some of the colleges had to adapt to the situation and decided to make test-optional. Still, the survey showed that 83% of students wanted to take the SAT and submit the scores.
As a result, the decision of the College Board was to make the SAT flexible and student-friendly. Starting from 2024, SAT in the US will be entirely digital. But now, SATs are still important for international students while being optional for domestic students (80% of US schools do not require SATs according to FairTest).
About Main Changes
The logical question comes to mind: what exactly will be changed except for the online format? Here is a list of the main innovations:
1. Fast Score Results
It will take less time to check the test and send the score reports. Thus, waiting for the results won’t be stressful and time-consuming for the applicants.
2. Reduced Length of Exam
Secondly, the time for passing the test will also be reduced. The digital SAT will take two hours instead of three. Furthermore, there will be some other novelties:
- Questions will be concise;
- The passages for reading will be shorter;
- As for the reading part, the applicants will need to answer only one question instead of multiple once.
3. Authorized Use of Calculators
The calculators will be allowed for both parts of the math section. This change will also help to shorten the test day.
Benefits of Online SAT
The experts believe that digital SAT will have many benefits for both educators and students. Let’s look through the main advantages of online tests:
Tests Are Becoming More Student-Friendly
As is mentioned above, online SAT will take less time and become more efficient. Therefore, the only things necessary for applicants will include a device and two hours of free time.
Less Stressful Exam
Additionally, the SAT will become less stressful for the applicants. After the pilot runs of online SAT held the previous year, students said they felt more confident during the online test. Hence, the experts believe that it will positively impact the overall test scores.
Some Pitfalls to Consider
Apart from positive changes, there are also some negative aspects of digital SAT. The most visible one will relate to the increased competition among the students.
With the change of the test form, the test will probably be easier for applicants. Consequently, the students will need to concentrate more on other aspects of admission to stand out from the rest.
To sum up, the digital SAT will influence the admission process. The high test scores won’t be a chance to get ahead of other applicants. Otherwise, the importance of admission essays will rise.
Writing a perfect personal statement, for instance, will be an excellent opportunity to catch the eye of the admission officers. Thus, the applicants will need to pay more attention to the quality of the essays. So, the professional help of our experts can be handy in this situation.
All in all, the world is changing, and the education system is not the exception. So, who knows, maybe, the digital SAT will be the first and most remarkable step to the full reorganization of the admission process.