WORK, WORK, WORK: Hundreds of thousands of students took the new SAT on March 5. Of the 8,089 who completed a follow-up survey, 71 percent “said the test reflected what they’re learning in school,” and students indicated “by a 6 to 1 margin” that they preferred this new format to the previous one.
The shift away from obscure vocabulary was greeted with glee, as 75 percent reported the Reading section was easier than expected. Eighty percent also said the words on the new test “would be useful to them later in life, compared with 55 percent” of survey respondents who said so last year.
Roughly half of the survey respondents used Khan Academy’s free SAT test prep program, launched in June 2015 as an effort to level out the playing field for families who cannot afford to pay for these services. The College Board noted a 19 percent “decrease in the number of students that paid for test prep resources.”
The College Board also attempted to bring some levity to the survey, asking students what they ate before the test. “Sunny side up eggs with cayenne pepper on oat nut bread toast,” one Pennsylvania student reported. Also: Rihanna’s “Work” tops the chart of most popular songs among SAT test-takers.