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SAT scores and a call for increased rigor in American academics!

The Monitor on Psychology recently drew attention to a September -published article in Psychological Science that examined SAT scores and subsequent college performance of almost 150,000 students. What did they find? 2012’s scores have dropped substantially, especially in reading, since 2006. And 57% of SAT-takers did not score high enough to predict that they’ll succeed in college! (For those who are wondering – SAT scores did predict college performance over and above high school GPA.)

MORE THAN HALF?! Of students clearly interested in attending college?! Suffice it to say, I’m concerned that what we’re doing now isn’t working.

So here’s one thing I did when I read this… I emailed my new 2013 representative in the Texas State Board of Education. This is what I said:

“Representative Xxxxx,

Congratulations on another re-election to the SBOE, and thank you for the hard work you do to serve the students and families of Southeast Texas. I recently saw something that, as an educator of college students from the Houston area, really concerned me. Sackett et al. (2012)  reported that 57% of SAT-takers in 2012 didn’t score high enough to predict college success, and scores have been dropping, especially in reading. I don’t have a brilliant solution for this, but I am worried.

I’m part of a faculty educating future counselors and educators, and I know they are doing their part to prepare for the challenges of helping Texas students develop into everything they have the potential to be. I just want to be a voice expressing concern and asking for help from the Texas SBOE; I hope we are all taking a long term view for our students’ college and vocational readiness.

Do you know who your State Board rep is? Find out here.

And please let me encourage you – you are exactly the right person to contact your state board representative – for the state board of education, for senate, for congress. As part of the electorate, let me encourage you to be actively involved in assisting your representatives to do their part in creating a government that reflects your values! Someone else (with more education, more background, more whatever-you-might-think-you-need) is not better equipped than you for this!
Start small if you want and tell us in the comments – If you were going to make changes to improve basic reading, writing, math, and critical thinking, what would you do?

Again, thank you so much,
Stephanie Ellis, Ph.D.

Sackett, P.R., Kuncel, N.R., Beatty, A.S., RIgdon, J.L., Shen, W., & Kiger, T.B. (2012). The role of socioeconomic status in SAT-Grade relationships and in college admissions decisions. Psychological Science, 23 (9), published online.”


  1. […] SAT scores and a call for increased rigor in American academics! ( […]

  2. Johna764 says:

    Wow, this article is fastidious, my younger sister is analyzing these kinds of things, thus I am going to convey her. dgadbegdcedd

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