New SAT 'Adversity Score' Sparks Controversy

52 min
at 10:00 AM
Standardized Test with yellow pencil (Michael Quirk)

There’s another score students can get on the SAT now: an "adversity score" that takes into account environmental factors like poverty, neighborhood, and school funding. The College Board announced it will roll out this score to 150 colleges by the end of this year, and make it available to all colleges in 2020. The new score comes in response to criticism that SAT test scores tend to positively correlate with wealth and are given undue weight in college admissions. Proponents say the new index will help diversify college admissions, while critics argue that a single number cannot encapsulate hardship, and that standardized testing itself only exacerbates inequality. We want to hear from you: What do you think about the new SAT "adversity score"?

Related Links:
By Omitting Race, the SAT's New Adversity Score Misrepresents Reality (Time)
SAT Adversity Index: A Drive Toward Diversity Without Discussing Race (NYT)


Anemona Hartocollis, higher education reporter, The New York Times

Richard Kahlenberg, director of K-12 equity and senior fellow, The Century Foundation; author, "The Remedy: Class, Race and Affirmative Action"

André J. Washinton, third year law student, University of Chicago Law School

Leigh Patel, associate dean of equity and justice, school of education, University of Pittsburgh