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It’s Time to Abolish the ACT and SAT Essay

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A young girl is excited about graduating high school and attending her first year at college. She tries hard at school and receives above-average grades. She is an active student involved in student council, band, the drama team, and peer tutoring, but her ACT scores are extremely low, disqualifying her from many universities. The young girl represents many students who are not successful at taking standardized tests because they have not developed the advanced skills required to take a test like the ACT or SAT. An academically motivated and responsible student should not be prevented from attending college because a "standard" test is not his or her standard. The current methods of testing for the ACT or SAT should be abolished and…show more content…
Some of these variables might negatively affect a student's ability to answer the specific multiple-choice questions on a standardized test, but the learning potential lies within the student, not the multiple-choice question. The makers of the test cannot encompass all the variables of the students in the multiple-choice questions, nor should they have to try. The multiple-choice questions should be replaced with essay questions that allow for a diverse response from students of many backgrounds, not one "standard" response from a uniform background. Supporters of standardized testing might argue that a test cannot encompass all the variables of the student population, but essay questions encourage diversity, not uniformity, in the students.

Successful ACT test takers may have no interest in college, yet they may be accepted and attend on scholarship money from the school because of the high ACT scores. This student might waste time and money in college because he or she has no real interest in school; he or she was simply good at taking multiple-choice tests. An essay question addressing and assessing the student's potential and desire to learn might have caught the unmotivated student before he or she entered college. Multiple-choice questions determining reading comprehension and grammar skills can easily be substituted with a different,
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