The SAT (and ACT)

Whoa. Cool:

The University of Chicago announced Thursday that it would no longer require applicants for the undergraduate college to submit standardized test scores.

While it will still allow applicants to submit their SAT or ACT scores, university officials said they would let prospective undergraduates send transcripts on their own and submit video introductions and nontraditional materials to supplement their applications.

“We were sending a message to students, with our own requirements, that one test basically identifies you,” said Jim Nondorf, vice president and dean of admissions at U. of C. “Despite the fact that we would say testing is only one piece of the application, that’s the first thing a college asks you. We wanted to really take a look at all our requirements and make sure they were fair to every group, that everybody, anybody could aspire to a place like UChicago.”

More organizations need to follow this lead here because what Nondorf suggests is true: One test does not define you.

While both my school-aged kiddos are taking non-traditional paths right now (i.e. hackschooling) I’ve been wondering what their futures will like when it comes to standardized testing and the like.

I, personally, was a terrible test taker and my first SAT score was an 880 which means that I barely got my name right essentially (I believe you get 400 points for that).

I was beyond dismayed when I received this notice because I believed, at the time, that my future was suddenly stripped from me and that I’d never make much of myself because I could barely figure those types of things out.

Clearly, that test didn’t define me nor did it necessary stop my personal and professional development but it created a ton of anxiety and needless stress in my life. And, I did, for a time, believe that I was essentially “stupid” and dimwitted – neither are true (or, at least as far as I can tell).

Standardized testing fails on so many levels that it’s insane that we still institute it today. “Modern” education is way behind the ball.