Today, the College Board (CB) has formally announced they will stop administering the SAT essay and subject tests.
It’s no secret that the subject tests, which are redundant alongside AP tests, have become less relevant over the years. COVID has accelerated their demise.
At Ashland Prep, we had thought that there would be a small chance the subject tests, which are hour-long multiple choice tests in various academic subjects, could make a comeback as long as CB supported and administered them. We even recommended to students that, if they had the skills for them, they should take them. A majority of the top 100 schools will be undergoing an admissions year with an unprecedented lack of data from prospective students, and subject tests could have played a small part in filling that data void.
Still, CB made the right decision here, for both the essay and the subject tests. However, students in AP classes should now do their best on the AP exams themselves. No more blowing off the AP tests while getting As in AP classes. For many students in the classes of 2021 and 2022, AP scores may be the only standardized testing data they submit to colleges.
In regards to the SAT essay, good riddance. Let’s hope the ACT essay follows suit in the immediate future.
For now, students should continue to abide by the same philosophy regarding college admissions: make admissions staff’s lives as easy as possible. If you have the means and the time to prepare for the SAT or ACT, take them. Give college admissions teams the data they will be lacking for the class of 2021/2022, especially if this data strengthens your students’ application for that particular school.