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phugoid1982
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Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Fri Apr 16, 2021 5:45 pm

I was having this discussion with an old college buddy of mine today who also studied aero/astro engineering with me ages ago. He was upset telling me how now "dumb" kids with low SAT scores but artificially good grades will get into elite schools and they'll be "coddled" to stay in since Caltech and MIT and several other elite tech schools put a moratorium on standardized testing due to COVID. For one, I'm a little surprised my buddy still thinks about college admissions and getting rejected from MIT more than 15 years after finishing college. I am of the opinion that the students who apply to those schools are so self selecting that I doubt someone who thought they couldn't handle it would apply. Also, when I was in school, almost 60% left engineering the 1st year so they got weeded out. I got rejected from MIT but I had the stats to get in back then and had good grades and the 2 people from my class who got in had similar stats as myself. Although to be frank, I only applied because of pressure. I wanted a life during college which thankfully I had. I can't imagine anyone who like my friend says "works hard" but can't hack it would survive at Caltech or even MIT if they couldn't and really doubt they'd lower the standards. Those are probably the two most meritocratic universities in the US (no legacies, no athletic scholarships, nada).
Last edited by phugoid1982 on Fri Apr 16, 2021 6:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
M564038
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT due to COVID?

Fri Apr 16, 2021 5:52 pm

For those not from your specific country. What is a “SAT”, and how does it differ from grades?
 
phugoid1982
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT due to COVID?

Fri Apr 16, 2021 6:06 pm

M564038 wrote:
For those not from your specific country. What is a “SAT”, and how does it differ from grades?


Sorry, I apologize for my US-centric thinking. The SAT is an entrance exam that if memory serves me correctly was a couple of hours long and had a verbal section and a math section. It has changed so much over the years so I don't know what the current form of it entails. Admissions to universities in the US are based on both grades, SAT scores, a personal essay and are more holistic. I've heard horror stories from my Dad about the ranking system to get into colleges in India and I'm sure it's like that in other countries where if you just miss the cutoff it's game over.
 
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T18
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Fri Apr 16, 2021 6:34 pm

Something I feel the need to note, the SAT scores tended to be more for Schools in the North while Southern schools seem to care more about the ACT (at least from the schools I applied to). Both are standardized tests that will give you a score that colleges can use as an admission standard. I took both and frankly found the ACT to be a better test for me and with a clearer score criteria. That said I'm not really sure that a standardized test is the best way to determine if one should get into a school but I did like that my SAT/ACT scores both granted me 'guaranteed admission' to the schools I applied to as I had those and a mid 3 GPA and not much else to my name.
“Racing's important to men who do it well. When you're racing, it's life. Anything that happens before or after is just waiting.” ― Steve McQueen (Le Mans) 1971
 
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Aaron747
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Fri Apr 16, 2021 7:06 pm

phugoid1982 wrote:
I was having this discussion with an old college buddy of mine today who also studied aero/astro engineering with me ages ago. He was upset telling me how now "dumb" kids with low SAT scores but artificially good grades will get into elite schools and they'll be "coddled" to stay in since Caltech and MIT and several other elite tech schools put a moratorium on standardized testing due to COVID. For one, I'm a little surprised my buddy still thinks about college admissions and getting rejected from MIT more than 15 years after finishing college. I am of the opinion that the students who apply to those schools are so self selecting that I doubt someone who thought they couldn't handle it would apply. Also, when I was in school, almost 60% left engineering the 1st year so they got weeded out. I got rejected from MIT but I had the stats to get in back then and had good grades and the 2 people from my class who got in had similar stats as myself. Although to be frank, I only applied because of pressure. I wanted a life during college which thankfully I had. I can't imagine anyone who like my friend says "works hard" but can't hack it would survive at Caltech or even MIT if they couldn't and really doubt they'd lower the standards. Those are probably the two most meritocratic universities in the US (no legacies, no athletic scholarships, nada).


Classic sour grapes...does your buddy listen to whine radio shows like Ben Shapiro? His attitude reeks of entitlement...I didn’t get in so these other people must be coddled or benefiting from lower standards :lol:

As you said, applications are self selecting, and nearly any serious applicant who got rejected by MIT would still end up going to a top notch engineering school. This is nothing mature adults whine about.
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LittleFokker
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Fri Apr 16, 2021 7:34 pm

I thought a number of universities were beginning to adopt the policy of not considering standardized tests as a condition of application acceptance, even before COVID. GPA, extracurriculars, and application essays are being given far greater weighting.

Standardized tests are anything but. Too much focus on a single moment of your academic life and it causes schools to teach to the test rather than foster the learning of information.
"All human activities are doomed to failure." - Jean Paul Sartre
 
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casinterest
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Fri Apr 16, 2021 7:49 pm

The Problem with the SAT and ACT is that there are ways to game it by teaching for the test, rather than teaching on broad knowledge and application. The Advanced Math is there to trick folks, and the Advanced Language skills are so focused that they barely have application anywhere else. I could have gone back and done better on both tests with focused studying for them, yet I gained acceptance to multiple engineering schools based on the results. I knew one friend from college that while exceptionally bright, they bombed the test they took with me. They went on to study the ACT/SAT and got much higher scores that they resubmitted. This person was an A+ student, but did not do well at standardized testing.


I can say that the SAT/ACT got me accepted to every school that I submitted them too without formally applying. (Back in my day you could select the school you wanted to send them too without a formal application). However i always felt that my language portion could have been higher with a bit more studying.

I think there are far more parallels in teaching these days. and hopefully less gaming of the system.

It is my opinion that a body of high school work ,extracurricular involvement ,and time management skills should count more than a 3 hour test
Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did..So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.--Mark Twain
 
luckyone
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Fri Apr 16, 2021 8:29 pm

I've long thought that the SAT was a lousy metric due to it's theoretical nature, which can provide a disadvantage to those whose aptitudes lie elsewhere. I always struggled with standardized tests in school if for no other reason there wasn't much of a practical application, so why am I sitting here for hours filling in these damn bubbles. I otherwise did very well in school, and am a physician...so in part I feel rather validated.
 
phugoid1982
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Fri Apr 16, 2021 8:35 pm

Aaron747 wrote:
phugoid1982 wrote:
I was having this discussion with an old college buddy of mine today who also studied aero/astro engineering with me ages ago. He was upset telling me how now "dumb" kids with low SAT scores but artificially good grades will get into elite schools and they'll be "coddled" to stay in since Caltech and MIT and several other elite tech schools put a moratorium on standardized testing due to COVID. For one, I'm a little surprised my buddy still thinks about college admissions and getting rejected from MIT more than 15 years after finishing college. I am of the opinion that the students who apply to those schools are so self selecting that I doubt someone who thought they couldn't handle it would apply. Also, when I was in school, almost 60% left engineering the 1st year so they got weeded out. I got rejected from MIT but I had the stats to get in back then and had good grades and the 2 people from my class who got in had similar stats as myself. Although to be frank, I only applied because of pressure. I wanted a life during college which thankfully I had. I can't imagine anyone who like my friend says "works hard" but can't hack it would survive at Caltech or even MIT if they couldn't and really doubt they'd lower the standards. Those are probably the two most meritocratic universities in the US (no legacies, no athletic scholarships, nada).


Classic sour grapes...does your buddy listen to whine radio shows like Ben Shapiro? His attitude reeks of entitlement...I didn’t get in so these other people must be coddled or benefiting from lower standards :lol:

As you said, applications are self selecting, and nearly any serious applicant who got rejected by MIT would still end up going to a top notch engineering school. This is nothing mature adults whine about.


Haha. The funny thing is I'm the more conservative one and my friend is usually very liberal. I think it stems from this silly Asian obsession with college rankings. My friend's parents were more embarrassed by the fact that his sister went to Harvard and he didn't My dad was an engineering professor but never batted an eye when I turned down Cornell for Illinois because it was a top 5 Engineering school and I could still have a life. My mom thought since I liked acting I should be an actor so I consider myself fortunate my parents were not as tough on me as a lot of Asian parents. I used to work for a major defense contractor and it was always obnoxious when people asked me where I went to school. It was always Asians/South Asians. No one else. I never cared about that stuff nor did I ever ask someone where they went to school unless they went to Michigan so I could joke about the perceived athletic rivalry.
 
phugoid1982
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Fri Apr 16, 2021 8:41 pm

luckyone wrote:
I've long thought that the SAT was a lousy metric due to it's theoretical nature, which can provide a disadvantage to those whose aptitudes lie elsewhere. I always struggled with standardized tests in school if for no other reason there wasn't much of a practical application, so why am I sitting here for hours filling in these damn bubbles. I otherwise did very well in school, and am a physician...so in part I feel rather validated.


I was always a B student in chemistry and I when I got to college, I apparently flunked the math placement test and aced the chemistry one so I was forced to enroll in Pre-calc. My roommate aced both and yet failed both Calc and chemistry. I on the other hand was placed into advanced chem and was failing it and switched back to normal chem and despite the misgivings of my advisor took Calc I and aced ind finished my both Calc II and DFQ as a freshman.
 
luckyone
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Fri Apr 16, 2021 8:42 pm

luckyone wrote:
I've long thought that the SAT was a lousy metric due to it's theoretical nature, which can provide a disadvantage to those whose aptitudes lie elsewhere. I always struggled with standardized tests in school if for no other reason there wasn't much of a practical application, so why am I sitting here for hours filling in these damn bubbles. I otherwise did very well in school, and am a physician...so in part I feel rather validated.

T18 wrote:
Something I feel the need to note, the SAT scores tended to be more for Schools in the North while Southern schools seem to care more about the ACT (at least from the schools I applied to). Both are standardized tests that will give you a score that colleges can use as an admission standard. I took both and frankly found the ACT to be a better test for me and with a clearer score criteria. That said I'm not really sure that a standardized test is the best way to determine if one should get into a school but I did like that my SAT/ACT scores both granted me 'guaranteed admission' to the schools I applied to as I had those and a mid 3 GPA and not much else to my name.

I would say, that at least when I was applying to college in the South, the SAT was all they cared about. It seemed that in the Great Lakes the ACT was more common.
 
phugoid1982
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Fri Apr 16, 2021 8:45 pm

casinterest wrote:
The Problem with the SAT and ACT is that there are ways to game it by teaching for the test, rather than teaching on broad knowledge and application. The Advanced Math is there to trick folks, and the Advanced Language skills are so focused that they barely have application anywhere else. I could have gone back and done better on both tests with focused studying for them, yet I gained acceptance to multiple engineering schools based on the results. I knew one friend from college that while exceptionally bright, they bombed the test they took with me. They went on to study the ACT/SAT and got much higher scores that they resubmitted. This person was an A+ student, but did not do well at standardized testing.


I can say that the SAT/ACT got me accepted to every school that I submitted them too without formally applying. (Back in my day you could select the school you wanted to send them too without a formal application). However i always felt that my language portion could have been higher with a bit more studying.

I think there are far more parallels in teaching these days. and hopefully less gaming of the system.

It is my opinion that a body of high school work ,extracurricular involvement ,and time management skills should count more than a 3 hour test


Agreed. The SAT math just needs to be gamed. If I hadn't learned the trick I probably would've messed it all up back in the day.
 
luckyone
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Fri Apr 16, 2021 8:49 pm

phugoid1982 wrote:
luckyone wrote:
I've long thought that the SAT was a lousy metric due to it's theoretical nature, which can provide a disadvantage to those whose aptitudes lie elsewhere. I always struggled with standardized tests in school if for no other reason there wasn't much of a practical application, so why am I sitting here for hours filling in these damn bubbles. I otherwise did very well in school, and am a physician...so in part I feel rather validated.


I was always a B student in chemistry and I when I got to college, I apparently flunked the math placement test and aced the chemistry one so I was forced to enroll in Pre-calc. My roommate aced both and yet failed both Calc and chemistry. I on the other hand was placed into advanced chem and was failing it and switched back to normal chem and despite the misgivings of my advisor took Calc I and aced ind finished my both Calc II and DFQ as a freshman.

I was a chemistry major in college and have a BS in Chemistry, though obviously I don't work in that field anymore. Pardon my ignorance, perhaps we studied in different systems. How many chemistry courses did you take prior to college? I took one, and it was one grade, which isn't reflective of ones overall aptitude studying chemistry as an intro college level course covers in two weeks what high school chemistry covers in a year. With the exception of Physical Chemistry, one does not need any math skills beyond basic algebra plus and chug for undergraduate level chemistry. Obviously if a student were to do research or pursue graduate level chemistry with a heavy theoretical or physics component that would be different, but again, the undergrad does not need it.
 
phugoid1982
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Fri Apr 16, 2021 8:59 pm

luckyone wrote:
phugoid1982 wrote:
luckyone wrote:
I've long thought that the SAT was a lousy metric due to it's theoretical nature, which can provide a disadvantage to those whose aptitudes lie elsewhere. I always struggled with standardized tests in school if for no other reason there wasn't much of a practical application, so why am I sitting here for hours filling in these damn bubbles. I otherwise did very well in school, and am a physician...so in part I feel rather validated.


I was always a B student in chemistry and I when I got to college, I apparently flunked the math placement test and aced the chemistry one so I was forced to enroll in Pre-calc. My roommate aced both and yet failed both Calc and chemistry. I on the other hand was placed into advanced chem and was failing it and switched back to normal chem and despite the misgivings of my advisor took Calc I and aced ind finished my both Calc II and DFQ as a freshman.

I was a chemistry major in college and have a BS in Chemistry, though obviously I don't work in that field anymore. Pardon my ignorance, perhaps we studied in different systems. How many chemistry courses did you take prior to college? I took one, and it was one grade, which isn't reflective of ones overall aptitude studying chemistry as an intro college level course covers in two weeks what high school chemistry covers in a year. With the exception of Physical Chemistry, one does not need any math skills beyond basic algebra plus and chug for undergraduate level chemistry. Obviously if a student were to do research or pursue graduate level chemistry with a heavy theoretical or physics component that would be different, but again, the undergrad does not need it.


I honestly don't remember but I believe I took only a year or two of chemistry in high school. Unfortunately, our HS teacher was not very bright but tried to bamboozle us so we'd think she knew more than she knew. At the time I was at Illinois we only needed 1 year of chemistry but because I had scored so "high" on that silly test I got placed into Advanced Organic Chemistry which was so out of my depth. I still remember going to the Profs. office to drop the class and he could se the distressed look on my face and was super sympathetic. The funny thing is I heard the curriculum was changed and only requires one basic course in chemistry. Makes sense. The only time I ever used chemistry in Aero was when I took Rocket propulsion and we balanced equations and I had learned that in middle school
 
luckyone
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Fri Apr 16, 2021 9:02 pm

phugoid1982 wrote:
luckyone wrote:
phugoid1982 wrote:

I was always a B student in chemistry and I when I got to college, I apparently flunked the math placement test and aced the chemistry one so I was forced to enroll in Pre-calc. My roommate aced both and yet failed both Calc and chemistry. I on the other hand was placed into advanced chem and was failing it and switched back to normal chem and despite the misgivings of my advisor took Calc I and aced ind finished my both Calc II and DFQ as a freshman.

I was a chemistry major in college and have a BS in Chemistry, though obviously I don't work in that field anymore. Pardon my ignorance, perhaps we studied in different systems. How many chemistry courses did you take prior to college? I took one, and it was one grade, which isn't reflective of ones overall aptitude studying chemistry as an intro college level course covers in two weeks what high school chemistry covers in a year. With the exception of Physical Chemistry, one does not need any math skills beyond basic algebra plus and chug for undergraduate level chemistry. Obviously if a student were to do research or pursue graduate level chemistry with a heavy theoretical or physics component that would be different, but again, the undergrad does not need it.


I honestly don't remember but I believe I took only a year or two of chemistry in high school. Unfortunately, our HS teacher was not very bright but tried to bamboozle us so we'd think she knew more than she knew. At the time I was at Illinois we only needed 1 year of chemistry but because I had scored so "high" on that silly test I got placed into Advanced Organic Chemistry which was so out of my depth. I still remember going to the Profs. office to drop the class and he could se the distressed look on my face and was super sympathetic. The funny thing is I heard the curriculum was changed and only requires one basic course in chemistry. Makes sense. The only time I ever used chemistry in Aero was when I took Rocket propulsion and we balanced equations and I had learned that in middle school

Um, wow, something very squirrely happened there. You should never have been placed into Advanced OChem just to fulfil a basic science requirement. The only people taking Advanced O Chem are chemistry majors or minors.
 
phugoid1982
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Fri Apr 16, 2021 11:04 pm

luckyone wrote:
phugoid1982 wrote:
luckyone wrote:
I was a chemistry major in college and have a BS in Chemistry, though obviously I don't work in that field anymore. Pardon my ignorance, perhaps we studied in different systems. How many chemistry courses did you take prior to college? I took one, and it was one grade, which isn't reflective of ones overall aptitude studying chemistry as an intro college level course covers in two weeks what high school chemistry covers in a year. With the exception of Physical Chemistry, one does not need any math skills beyond basic algebra plus and chug for undergraduate level chemistry. Obviously if a student were to do research or pursue graduate level chemistry with a heavy theoretical or physics component that would be different, but again, the undergrad does not need it.


I honestly don't remember but I believe I took only a year or two of chemistry in high school. Unfortunately, our HS teacher was not very bright but tried to bamboozle us so we'd think she knew more than she knew. At the time I was at Illinois we only needed 1 year of chemistry but because I had scored so "high" on that silly test I got placed into Advanced Organic Chemistry which was so out of my depth. I still remember going to the Profs. office to drop the class and he could se the distressed look on my face and was super sympathetic. The funny thing is I heard the curriculum was changed and only requires one basic course in chemistry. Makes sense. The only time I ever used chemistry in Aero was when I took Rocket propulsion and we balanced equations and I had learned that in middle school

Um, wow, something very squirrely happened there. You should never have been placed into Advanced OChem just to fulfil a basic science requirement. The only people taking Advanced O Chem are chemistry majors or minors.


Yeah, that was some insane stuff. There was some weird stuff at Illinois in those days. The Physics dept. was in the college of engineering hence why we took 2 years of physics including statistical thermo and quantum mechanics but Chem engineering was in the college of liberal arts and Sciences so it could be better integrated with the Chemistry. dept. due to common core requirements. I felt bad for them because they had the fewest electives, most rigorous curriculum, but because they were in the college of liberal arts and sciences had to get much higher GPAs to grad with honors.
 
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Pellegrine
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Sat Apr 17, 2021 4:27 am

luckyone wrote:
I've long thought that the SAT was a lousy metric due to it's theoretical nature, which can provide a disadvantage to those whose aptitudes lie elsewhere. I always struggled with standardized tests in school if for no other reason there wasn't much of a practical application, so why am I sitting here for hours filling in these damn bubbles. I otherwise did very well in school, and am a physician...so in part I feel rather validated.


Jesus, you're a physician now and you're still feeling bad about your SAT score back then? This isn't a dig at you, but this is too much stress on 16 and 17yo kids. For real.
We fly JETS, we don't fly donkeys. Citizenship/Residence::: Washington DC, US; Vaud, CH; Providenciales, TCI (hence my avi)
 
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Sat Apr 17, 2021 4:36 am

phugoid1982 wrote:
I was having this discussion with an old college buddy of mine today who also studied aero/astro engineering with me ages ago. He was upset telling me how now "dumb" kids with low SAT scores but artificially good grades will get into elite schools and they'll be "coddled" to stay in since Caltech and MIT and several other elite tech schools put a moratorium on standardized testing due to COVID. For one, I'm a little surprised my buddy still thinks about college admissions and getting rejected from MIT more than 15 years after finishing college. I am of the opinion that the students who apply to those schools are so self selecting that I doubt someone who thought they couldn't handle it would apply. Also, when I was in school, almost 60% left engineering the 1st year so they got weeded out. I got rejected from MIT but I had the stats to get in back then and had good grades and the 2 people from my class who got in had similar stats as myself. Although to be frank, I only applied because of pressure. I wanted a life during college which thankfully I had. I can't imagine anyone who like my friend says "works hard" but can't hack it would survive at Caltech or even MIT if they couldn't and really doubt they'd lower the standards. Those are probably the two most meritocratic universities in the US (no legacies, no athletic scholarships, nada).


MIT "recruited" me (academic, I'm NOT an athlete) from the private school I was going to. I said f... MIT and decided to go to art school. Then I got some other unrelated degrees. I have both sides of the brain, and after many years I've created a career that satisfies me. In HS I knew the dumbest kid on earth who I used to tutor in math get into Yale because of athletics and legacy. I apply to Yale, so whatever. I'm in my 30s and I don't think about all that testing and application crap anymore, but when I do, I would want it better for my kids than it was for me. I think it's great schools are lessening the worth of the College Board.
We fly JETS, we don't fly donkeys. Citizenship/Residence::: Washington DC, US; Vaud, CH; Providenciales, TCI (hence my avi)
 
ltbewr
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Sat Apr 17, 2021 11:17 am

The SAT and ACT tests (as well as others for graduate schools) were created in the 1930's-1940's to try help colleges determine who to admit without having their own individual tests. They allowed a potential applicant to take the tests in their hometown area, save the money and hassles with creating their own tests, a way to offset possibly inflated school grades and variances in quality of education. Then there was the factor that the tests were to keep out economically poor and other than White Anglo-Saxon males from getting into schools, only those from rich families more likely to give to the school later.

Beyond and before the suspension of these tests due to difficulty to conduct them due to Covid-19 restrictions, some colleges were not using them anymore or considering ending their use, mainly due to issues of economic and racial discrimination as well as inaccuracy of the predictability of them for success in college. For decades there have been complaints that the questions themselves, their wording, scenarios they present, gender and name references, were not relevant or an accurate way to determine the 'intelligence' of a student, especially if other than of White European birth or ancestry. If poor, you are less likely to have the money to take the 'prep' classes to improve your grades.There is the issue of those who don't do well with 'standardized' tests yet have good grades or have poor grades but can ace the tests. With both non-White and poor students is the lower quality of education one gets where they tend to live. Then for the most selective colleges, there are the disproportionate numbers and percentages of Asian applicants with high grades and test scores winning admittance, making it more difficult to have more 'diverse' student bodies. More selective colleges have also pushed for non-school factors in considering applicants, including involvement in sports, community activities, leadership experiences, to get more diverse student bodies.
 
luckyone
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Sat Apr 17, 2021 3:53 pm

Pellegrine wrote:
luckyone wrote:
I've long thought that the SAT was a lousy metric due to it's theoretical nature, which can provide a disadvantage to those whose aptitudes lie elsewhere. I always struggled with standardized tests in school if for no other reason there wasn't much of a practical application, so why am I sitting here for hours filling in these damn bubbles. I otherwise did very well in school, and am a physician...so in part I feel rather validated.


Jesus, you're a physician now and you're still feeling bad about your SAT score back then? This isn't a dig at you, but this is too much stress on 16 and 17yo kids. For real.

Wow way to put words in my mouth. Where did I say anything about “still” feeling bad, or even feeling bad at all? Not that I matters but, I went to the school of my choice. It doesn’t change the fact that my scholastic record significantly outperformed my SAT, which substantiates my opinion about the usefulness of the SAT. My answer was completely appropriate to the question at hand. Just because I don’t “feel bad” about my score doesn’t mean I can’t have an opinion on the usefulness of the test. Rather like I can say how much I love driving a Jaguar E-type and can still call it an impractical maintenance queen that is a waste of money.
 
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Pellegrine
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Sat Apr 17, 2021 6:02 pm

luckyone wrote:
Pellegrine wrote:
luckyone wrote:
I've long thought that the SAT was a lousy metric due to it's theoretical nature, which can provide a disadvantage to those whose aptitudes lie elsewhere. I always struggled with standardized tests in school if for no other reason there wasn't much of a practical application, so why am I sitting here for hours filling in these damn bubbles. I otherwise did very well in school, and am a physician...so in part I feel rather validated.


Jesus, you're a physician now and you're still feeling bad about your SAT score back then? This isn't a dig at you, but this is too much stress on 16 and 17yo kids. For real.

Wow way to put words in my mouth. Where did I say anything about “still” feeling bad, or even feeling bad at all? Not that I matters but, I went to the school of my choice. It doesn’t change the fact that my scholastic record significantly outperformed my SAT, which substantiates my opinion about the usefulness of the SAT. My answer was completely appropriate to the question at hand. Just because I don’t “feel bad” about my score doesn’t mean I can’t have an opinion on the usefulness of the test. Rather like I can say how much I love driving a Jaguar E-type and can still call it an impractical maintenance queen that is a waste of money.


Ok, well. My apologies for offending your sensibilities or getting the gist of your post wrong. I actually agree with you on the relevance of the SAT.
We fly JETS, we don't fly donkeys. Citizenship/Residence::: Washington DC, US; Vaud, CH; Providenciales, TCI (hence my avi)
 
phugoid1982
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Sat Apr 17, 2021 6:10 pm

ltbewr wrote:
More selective colleges have also pushed for non-school factors in considering applicants, including involvement in sports, community activities, leadership experiences, to get more diverse student bodies.


Caltech has huge problem with this. The student body is almost 50% Asian. I remember in HS I was somewhat interested in Caltech given it's proximity to LA and warm climate. Then I saw that everyone over there took proof based math and realized it wasn't for me. I'm a practical guy. I remember reading somewhere on a forum that someone asked a Prof in Aero why Caltech didn't have an aircraft design or flight mechanics course, which was my favorite and required in almost every aero curriculum, and his response was:

"Why would we ever do anything as boring as design airplanes?"

That says it all. I've always looked at Caltech as more applied science than engineering.
 
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einsteinboricua
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Sat Apr 17, 2021 7:07 pm

I seriously dislike the idea of a standardized test (probably because I crashed and burned when taking the GRE to go to grad school). However, I have to accept that it's among the best metrics to gauge if someone really knows their stuff. My experience through K-12 school was that teachers give out grades or bonus points (or penalties) for the stupidest of things, allowing parents and students to claim they have high grades when in reality they don't. I'd get dinged on not being "creative" enough (I wasn't as artistic as other people were). I would get an A just for having a semester's worth of notes on my notebook, or drawing a cover for the chapter to be discussed (an artistic one, of course). I'd get an A for coloring on a map the region where the Native Americans lives (the Maya, Incas, and Aztecs), or for even singing the Star Spangled Banner. In math, our teacher would "help" us by writing down the entire procedure but letting us write the answer. In high school, teachers demanded you build a binder with all the works of the semester organized (you'd get an A every trimester if you had everything in order and...you guessed it...creative decorations).

The students who are spoiled this way go and take a test and fail miserably or barely pass and realize they can't cope with college-level work. Meanwhile, you find that some students who are less than stellar do fairly well on these test and can hold their own in college courses. The former are afraid of failing; the latter already know what it's like and simply try again. I had a classmate from high school boldly proclaiming to have been accepted at the same university I did: she went to biology and dropped out altogether after her first chemistry test. She went on to beauty school and, last I remember, is still there washing hair (not even a hairstylist). Another dropped out too after her first year; she switched to history, then went on to law school (she made it through). A few close friends were already in their 4th year of engineering when they switched to business administration (couldn't deal with calculus or their EE courses). Many others followed the same path: entered a STEM field, couldn't cope with the effort, then dropped out or switched majors.

So I think SAT/ACT, while not mandatory, SHOULD be recommended still as a tie breaker. If I'm in an admission's committee, I'll take students who might have less than stellar grades, some extracurricular/volunteer activities, and a decent SAT score rather than the 4.0 student with nothing else to their name (skipping the SAT would be a dead giveaway that this person isn't willing to go the extra distance).
"You haven't seen a tree until you've seen its shadow from the sky."
 
phugoid1982
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Sat Apr 17, 2021 8:31 pm

einsteinboricua wrote:
I seriously dislike the idea of a standardized test (probably because I crashed and burned when taking the GRE to go to grad school). However, I have to accept that it's among the best metrics to gauge if someone really knows their stuff. My experience through K-12 school was that teachers give out grades or bonus points (or penalties) for the stupidest of things, allowing parents and students to claim they have high grades when in reality they don't. I'd get dinged on not being "creative" enough (I wasn't as artistic as other people were). I would get an A just for having a semester's worth of notes on my notebook, or drawing a cover for the chapter to be discussed (an artistic one, of course). I'd get an A for coloring on a map the region where the Native Americans lives (the Maya, Incas, and Aztecs), or for even singing the Star Spangled Banner. In math, our teacher would "help" us by writing down the entire procedure but letting us write the answer. In high school, teachers demanded you build a binder with all the works of the semester organized (you'd get an A every trimester if you had everything in order and...you guessed it...creative decorations).

The students who are spoiled this way go and take a test and fail miserably or barely pass and realize they can't cope with college-level work. Meanwhile, you find that some students who are less than stellar do fairly well on these test and can hold their own in college courses. The former are afraid of failing; the latter already know what it's like and simply try again. I had a classmate from high school boldly proclaiming to have been accepted at the same university I did: she went to biology and dropped out altogether after her first chemistry test. She went on to beauty school and, last I remember, is still there washing hair (not even a hairstylist). Another dropped out too after her first year; she switched to history, then went on to law school (she made it through). A few close friends were already in their 4th year of engineering when they switched to business administration (couldn't deal with calculus or their EE courses). Many others followed the same path: entered a STEM field, couldn't cope with the effort, then dropped out or switched majors.

So I think SAT/ACT, while not mandatory, SHOULD be recommended still as a tie breaker. If I'm in an admission's committee, I'll take students who might have less than stellar grades, some extracurricular/volunteer activities, and a decent SAT score rather than the 4.0 student with nothing else to their name (skipping the SAT would be a dead giveaway that this person isn't willing to go the extra distance).



I agree. The SAT verbal can be biased with the famous "oarsmen/regatta" association that was deemed elitist but the math which is fairly easy to game pretty well correlates with ability to deal with higher order problems. Did you grow up in PR btw given you moniker? I did as well but left a long time ago.
Last edited by phugoid1982 on Sat Apr 17, 2021 8:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
LCDFlight
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Sat Apr 17, 2021 8:32 pm

casinterest wrote:
The Problem with the SAT and ACT is that there are ways to game it by teaching for the test, rather than teaching on broad knowledge and application. The Advanced Math is there to trick folks, and the Advanced Language skills are so focused that they barely have application anywhere else. I could have gone back and done better on both tests with focused studying for them, yet I gained acceptance to multiple engineering schools based on the results. I knew one friend from college that while exceptionally bright, they bombed the test they took with me. They went on to study the ACT/SAT and got much higher scores that they resubmitted. This person was an A+ student, but did not do well at standardized testing.


I can say that the SAT/ACT got me accepted to every school that I submitted them too without formally applying. (Back in my day you could select the school you wanted to send them too without a formal application). However i always felt that my language portion could have been higher with a bit more studying.

I think there are far more parallels in teaching these days. and hopefully less gaming of the system.

It is my opinion that a body of high school work ,extracurricular involvement ,and time management skills should count more than a 3 hour test


I don’t really think you can teach SAT/ACT any more than you can teach IQ. All 3 are fairly similar conceptually. Character and IQ are both important to succeed at schools like this. I agree with the statement that if they start admitting lower IQ students, they will need to change their academic standards. They will need to coddle the new group of students who fall outside the old standards.

At the end of the day, advanced STEM stuff just isn’t in the realm of possibility for people who aren’t, say in the top 10% of the spectrum. More realistically 5%. The median student at these schools are realistically in the top 1% for IQ. How are you going to find similar people without testing them.... there’s no way. You’ll be wrong almost all the time. Should they stop testing brain surgeons also?
 
phugoid1982
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Sat Apr 17, 2021 9:14 pm

LCDFlight wrote:
casinterest wrote:
The Problem with the SAT and ACT is that there are ways to game it by teaching for the test, rather than teaching on broad knowledge and application. The Advanced Math is there to trick folks, and the Advanced Language skills are so focused that they barely have application anywhere else. I could have gone back and done better on both tests with focused studying for them, yet I gained acceptance to multiple engineering schools based on the results. I knew one friend from college that while exceptionally bright, they bombed the test they took with me. They went on to study the ACT/SAT and got much higher scores that they resubmitted. This person was an A+ student, but did not do well at standardized testing.


I can say that the SAT/ACT got me accepted to every school that I submitted them too without formally applying. (Back in my day you could select the school you wanted to send them too without a formal application). However i always felt that my language portion could have been higher with a bit more studying.

I think there are far more parallels in teaching these days. and hopefully less gaming of the system.

It is my opinion that a body of high school work ,extracurricular involvement ,and time management skills should count more than a 3 hour test




I don’t really think you can teach SAT/ACT any more than you can teach IQ. All 3 are fairly similar conceptually. Character and IQ are both important to succeed at schools like this. I agree with the statement that if they start admitting lower IQ students, they will need to change their academic standards. They will need to coddle the new group of students who fall outside the old standards.

At the end of the day, advanced STEM stuff just isn’t in the realm of possibility for people who aren’t, say in the top 10% of the spectrum. More realistically 5%. The median student at these schools are realistically in the top 1% for IQ. How are you going to find similar people without testing them.... there’s no way. You’ll be wrong almost all the time. Should they stop testing brain surgeons also?


Agreed. My older sister who was a National Merit Scholar and class valedictorian did pretty low in math but aced the verbal which gave her a high cumulative score on the SAT but had a 4.0 She was pressured to do engineering even though she didn't like math and in high school failed math at the local community college so after a lot of tears and disappointment she pursued a liberal arts degree at Duke but it has served her well and she is happy in what she does which is the most important thing
 
luckyone
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Sat Apr 17, 2021 10:15 pm

LCDFlight wrote:

At the end of the day, advanced STEM stuff just isn’t in the realm of possibility for people who aren’t, say in the top 10% of the spectrum. More realistically 5%. The median student at these schools are realistically in the top 1% for IQ. How are you going to find similar people without testing them.... there’s no way. You’ll be wrong almost all the time. Should they stop testing brain surgeons also?

I’m not sure that’s an apples to apples comparisons. Neurosurgeons are tested extensively AND specifically. They take the MCAT and then spent four years in medical school being tested on how the body works. I lost count how many tests you take in medical school, but they are very subject specific. Then they have at least seven years of specific training, during which they are evaluated by an unofficial in service exam that can be yearly. Then, most reputable jobs require a board certification. Unlike the SAT, I can draw a direct line between the MCAT, medical school curriculum, residency plus fellowship, USMLE examination (there are three of them), and board certification (unless of course you’re Rand Paul, but that’s a separate discussion).

I can’t draw the same direct line between the SAT and my bachelor’s.
 
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akiss20
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Sat Apr 17, 2021 10:53 pm

LCDFlight wrote:
casinterest wrote:
The Problem with the SAT and ACT is that there are ways to game it by teaching for the test, rather than teaching on broad knowledge and application. The Advanced Math is there to trick folks, and the Advanced Language skills are so focused that they barely have application anywhere else. I could have gone back and done better on both tests with focused studying for them, yet I gained acceptance to multiple engineering schools based on the results. I knew one friend from college that while exceptionally bright, they bombed the test they took with me. They went on to study the ACT/SAT and got much higher scores that they resubmitted. This person was an A+ student, but did not do well at standardized testing.


I can say that the SAT/ACT got me accepted to every school that I submitted them too without formally applying. (Back in my day you could select the school you wanted to send them too without a formal application). However i always felt that my language portion could have been higher with a bit more studying.

I think there are far more parallels in teaching these days. and hopefully less gaming of the system.

It is my opinion that a body of high school work ,extracurricular involvement ,and time management skills should count more than a 3 hour test


I don’t really think you can teach SAT/ACT any more than you can teach IQ. All 3 are fairly similar conceptually. Character and IQ are both important to succeed at schools like this. I agree with the statement that if they start admitting lower IQ students, they will need to change their academic standards. They will need to coddle the new group of students who fall outside the old standards.

At the end of the day, advanced STEM stuff just isn’t in the realm of possibility for people who aren’t, say in the top 10% of the spectrum. More realistically 5%. The median student at these schools are realistically in the top 1% for IQ. How are you going to find similar people without testing them.... there’s no way. You’ll be wrong almost all the time. Should they stop testing brain surgeons also?


The SATs do not test anything besides your ability to take the SATs. There is a reason there is a whole industry of prep classes, because you learn the tricks they use to lead you to the wrong answer. No one is saying don't have testing, but the SATs are a horrible indicator of a person's actual capability (and if anything are more an indicator of one's ability to afford prep time, material, and classes). Most people going to MIT and Harvard are in AP/IB classes anyway and those test scores are much more indicative of the type of thinking that you will actually need to succeed at such institutions. The SATs never got you in anyway, they could only get you rejected. I have 3 degrees from MIT and never once did the SATs and the type of thinking I needed to do well on them serve me in actual STEM work. Same went for the GREs which more graduate schools are starting to abandon as well. The non-subject GREs are essentially equally as useless as the SATs in my opinion.
Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we've been waiting for. We are
 
LCDFlight
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Sat Apr 17, 2021 11:18 pm

akiss20 wrote:
LCDFlight wrote:
casinterest wrote:
The Problem with the SAT and ACT is that there are ways to game it by teaching for the test, rather than teaching on broad knowledge and application. The Advanced Math is there to trick folks, and the Advanced Language skills are so focused that they barely have application anywhere else. I could have gone back and done better on both tests with focused studying for them, yet I gained acceptance to multiple engineering schools based on the results. I knew one friend from college that while exceptionally bright, they bombed the test they took with me. They went on to study the ACT/SAT and got much higher scores that they resubmitted. This person was an A+ student, but did not do well at standardized testing.


I can say that the SAT/ACT got me accepted to every school that I submitted them too without formally applying. (Back in my day you could select the school you wanted to send them too without a formal application). However i always felt that my language portion could have been higher with a bit more studying.

I think there are far more parallels in teaching these days. and hopefully less gaming of the system.

It is my opinion that a body of high school work ,extracurricular involvement ,and time management skills should count more than a 3 hour test


I don’t really think you can teach SAT/ACT any more than you can teach IQ. All 3 are fairly similar conceptually. Character and IQ are both important to succeed at schools like this. I agree with the statement that if they start admitting lower IQ students, they will need to change their academic standards. They will need to coddle the new group of students who fall outside the old standards.

At the end of the day, advanced STEM stuff just isn’t in the realm of possibility for people who aren’t, say in the top 10% of the spectrum. More realistically 5%. The median student at these schools are realistically in the top 1% for IQ. How are you going to find similar people without testing them.... there’s no way. You’ll be wrong almost all the time. Should they stop testing brain surgeons also?


The SATs do not test anything besides your ability to take the SATs. There is a reason there is a whole industry of prep classes, because you learn the tricks they use to lead you to the wrong answer. No one is saying don't have testing, but the SATs are a horrible indicator of a person's actual capability (and if anything are more an indicator of one's ability to afford prep time, material, and classes). Most people going to MIT and Harvard are in AP/IB classes anyway and those test scores are much more indicative of the type of thinking that you will actually need to succeed at such institutions. The SATs never got you in anyway, they could only get you rejected. I have 3 degrees from MIT and never once did the SATs and the type of thinking I needed to do well on them serve me in actual STEM work. Same went for the GREs which more graduate schools are starting to abandon as well. The non-subject GREs are essentially equally as useless as the SATs in my opinion.


The SAT or GRE test Aptitude. As I said, you need that plus character (GPA is a decent proxy for that) to succeed at these top levels. The idea you can get through Caltech without enough aptitude, yeesh. I wouldn’t want to try that. They would need to make it easier.
 
luckyone
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Sun Apr 18, 2021 12:20 am

LCDFlight wrote:
akiss20 wrote:
LCDFlight wrote:

I don’t really think you can teach SAT/ACT any more than you can teach IQ. All 3 are fairly similar conceptually. Character and IQ are both important to succeed at schools like this. I agree with the statement that if they start admitting lower IQ students, they will need to change their academic standards. They will need to coddle the new group of students who fall outside the old standards.

At the end of the day, advanced STEM stuff just isn’t in the realm of possibility for people who aren’t, say in the top 10% of the spectrum. More realistically 5%. The median student at these schools are realistically in the top 1% for IQ. How are you going to find similar people without testing them.... there’s no way. You’ll be wrong almost all the time. Should they stop testing brain surgeons also?


The SATs do not test anything besides your ability to take the SATs. There is a reason there is a whole industry of prep classes, because you learn the tricks they use to lead you to the wrong answer. No one is saying don't have testing, but the SATs are a horrible indicator of a person's actual capability (and if anything are more an indicator of one's ability to afford prep time, material, and classes). Most people going to MIT and Harvard are in AP/IB classes anyway and those test scores are much more indicative of the type of thinking that you will actually need to succeed at such institutions. The SATs never got you in anyway, they could only get you rejected. I have 3 degrees from MIT and never once did the SATs and the type of thinking I needed to do well on them serve me in actual STEM work. Same went for the GREs which more graduate schools are starting to abandon as well. The non-subject GREs are essentially equally as useless as the SATs in my opinion.


The SAT or GRE test Aptitude. As I said, you need that plus character (GPA is a decent proxy for that) to succeed at these top levels. The idea you can get through Caltech without enough aptitude, yeesh. I wouldn’t want to try that. They would need to make it easier.

Nobody is suggesting one doesn’t need aptitude. But the SAT is not an accurate single point predictor of that aptitude. The GRE just felt like a more adult SAT. The trick with the GRE mathematics section is more often than not choosing the answer that there isn’t enough information. I did very well on GRE, simply heeding that pearl.
 
LCDFlight
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Sun Apr 18, 2021 2:17 am

luckyone wrote:
LCDFlight wrote:
akiss20 wrote:

The SATs do not test anything besides your ability to take the SATs. There is a reason there is a whole industry of prep classes, because you learn the tricks they use to lead you to the wrong answer. No one is saying don't have testing, but the SATs are a horrible indicator of a person's actual capability (and if anything are more an indicator of one's ability to afford prep time, material, and classes). Most people going to MIT and Harvard are in AP/IB classes anyway and those test scores are much more indicative of the type of thinking that you will actually need to succeed at such institutions. The SATs never got you in anyway, they could only get you rejected. I have 3 degrees from MIT and never once did the SATs and the type of thinking I needed to do well on them serve me in actual STEM work. Same went for the GREs which more graduate schools are starting to abandon as well. The non-subject GREs are essentially equally as useless as the SATs in my opinion.


The SAT or GRE test Aptitude. As I said, you need that plus character (GPA is a decent proxy for that) to succeed at these top levels. The idea you can get through Caltech without enough aptitude, yeesh. I wouldn’t want to try that. They would need to make it easier.

Nobody is suggesting one doesn’t need aptitude. But the SAT is not an accurate single point predictor of that aptitude. The GRE just felt like a more adult SAT. The trick with the GRE mathematics section is more often than not choosing the answer that there isn’t enough information. I did very well on GRE, simply heeding that pearl.


You're right; the tests used to have lots of tricks in them. But any test of aptitude has tricks and tests of logic. You say SAT is not an accurate single point predictor of aptitude. My reading said it 88% correlated with IQ, at least prior to 2016 redesign, which was partly to make it less "Aptitude" and more knowledge check.

IMO, GPA alone isn't enough to show you'll be able to hack it at Caltech or MIT. A person with 4.0 GPA usually is nowhere near smart enough to go to Caltech or MIT. They would be shat out quickly.
 
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akiss20
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Sun Apr 18, 2021 2:38 am

LCDFlight wrote:
luckyone wrote:
LCDFlight wrote:

The SAT or GRE test Aptitude. As I said, you need that plus character (GPA is a decent proxy for that) to succeed at these top levels. The idea you can get through Caltech without enough aptitude, yeesh. I wouldn’t want to try that. They would need to make it easier.

Nobody is suggesting one doesn’t need aptitude. But the SAT is not an accurate single point predictor of that aptitude. The GRE just felt like a more adult SAT. The trick with the GRE mathematics section is more often than not choosing the answer that there isn’t enough information. I did very well on GRE, simply heeding that pearl.


You're right; the tests used to have lots of tricks in them. But any test of aptitude has tricks and tests of logic. You say SAT is not an accurate single point predictor of aptitude. My reading said it 88% correlated with IQ, at least prior to 2016 redesign, which was partly to make it less "Aptitude" and more knowledge check.

IMO, GPA alone isn't enough to show you'll be able to hack it at Caltech or MIT. A person with 4.0 GPA usually is nowhere near smart enough to go to Caltech or MIT. They would be shat out quickly.


You clearly have very little idea of what you’re talking about. A 4.0 GPA in a courseload consisting of AP or IB classes (which will come with high marks on the respective AP/IB tests) is far more representative of the skills and character needed for future academic success than a 2400 on the SAT. Those courses are much more advanced and take much more capability than the SAT does.
Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we've been waiting for. We are
 
LCDFlight
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Sun Apr 18, 2021 2:50 am

akiss20 wrote:
LCDFlight wrote:
luckyone wrote:
Nobody is suggesting one doesn’t need aptitude. But the SAT is not an accurate single point predictor of that aptitude. The GRE just felt like a more adult SAT. The trick with the GRE mathematics section is more often than not choosing the answer that there isn’t enough information. I did very well on GRE, simply heeding that pearl.


You're right; the tests used to have lots of tricks in them. But any test of aptitude has tricks and tests of logic. You say SAT is not an accurate single point predictor of aptitude. My reading said it 88% correlated with IQ, at least prior to 2016 redesign, which was partly to make it less "Aptitude" and more knowledge check.

IMO, GPA alone isn't enough to show you'll be able to hack it at Caltech or MIT. A person with 4.0 GPA usually is nowhere near smart enough to go to Caltech or MIT. They would be shat out quickly.


You clearly have very little idea of what you’re talking about. A 4.0 GPA in a courseload consisting of AP or IB classes (which will come with high marks on the respective AP/IB tests) is far more representative of the skills and character needed for future academic success than a 2400 on the SAT. Those courses are much more advanced and take much more capability than the SAT does.


No, you're substituting in other standardized tests now, that's out of line, LOL. My point was far simpler and more correct - that the country is filled with relatively modest students with a 4.0, many from terrible schools, who actually aren't well prepared students. You also don't have a good idea of if their IQ is 105 or 140. If I were going to Caltech, I'd want to have enough brain power to get through it. And most of us do not. It's actually a real thing, different levels of capability. It's real.
 
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akiss20
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Sun Apr 18, 2021 3:05 am

LCDFlight wrote:
akiss20 wrote:
LCDFlight wrote:

You're right; the tests used to have lots of tricks in them. But any test of aptitude has tricks and tests of logic. You say SAT is not an accurate single point predictor of aptitude. My reading said it 88% correlated with IQ, at least prior to 2016 redesign, which was partly to make it less "Aptitude" and more knowledge check.

IMO, GPA alone isn't enough to show you'll be able to hack it at Caltech or MIT. A person with 4.0 GPA usually is nowhere near smart enough to go to Caltech or MIT. They would be shat out quickly.


You clearly have very little idea of what you’re talking about. A 4.0 GPA in a courseload consisting of AP or IB classes (which will come with high marks on the respective AP/IB tests) is far more representative of the skills and character needed for future academic success than a 2400 on the SAT. Those courses are much more advanced and take much more capability than the SAT does.


No, you're substituting in other standardized tests now, that's out of line, LOL. My point was far simpler and more correct - that the country is filled with relatively modest students with a 4.0, many from terrible schools, who actually aren't well prepared students. You also don't have a good idea of if their IQ is 105 or 140. If I were going to Caltech, I'd want to have enough brain power to get through it. And most of us do not. It's actually a real thing, different levels of capability. It's real.


Clearly there are because you didn’t read my original post it seems where I both advocated for testing and advocated for the use of AP/IB test scores as being more indicative. I also find it amusing to be lectured on what it takes to cut it at the institution I went to for both my undergraduate and graduate studies. Clearly you don’t actually want to listen so I’m going to stop this conversation. Good night.
Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we've been waiting for. We are
 
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casinterest
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Sun Apr 18, 2021 3:27 pm

LCDFlight wrote:
casinterest wrote:
The Problem with the SAT and ACT is that there are ways to game it by teaching for the test, rather than teaching on broad knowledge and application. The Advanced Math is there to trick folks, and the Advanced Language skills are so focused that they barely have application anywhere else. I could have gone back and done better on both tests with focused studying for them, yet I gained acceptance to multiple engineering schools based on the results. I knew one friend from college that while exceptionally bright, they bombed the test they took with me. They went on to study the ACT/SAT and got much higher scores that they resubmitted. This person was an A+ student, but did not do well at standardized testing.


I can say that the SAT/ACT got me accepted to every school that I submitted them too without formally applying. (Back in my day you could select the school you wanted to send them too without a formal application). However i always felt that my language portion could have been higher with a bit more studying.

I think there are far more parallels in teaching these days. and hopefully less gaming of the system.

It is my opinion that a body of high school work ,extracurricular involvement ,and time management skills should count more than a 3 hour test


I don’t really think you can teach SAT/ACT any more than you can teach IQ. All 3 are fairly similar conceptually. Character and IQ are both important to succeed at schools like this. I agree with the statement that if they start admitting lower IQ students, they will need to change their academic standards. They will need to coddle the new group of students who fall outside the old standards.

At the end of the day, advanced STEM stuff just isn’t in the realm of possibility for people who aren’t, say in the top 10% of the spectrum. More realistically 5%. The median student at these schools are realistically in the top 1% for IQ. How are you going to find similar people without testing them.... there’s no way. You’ll be wrong almost all the time. Should they stop testing brain surgeons also?



The SAT and ACT can be taught. They are focused tests for general placement for about 60-70% of the test. A lot of knowledge goes into them, but there are sections that have no reason to be there other than for trickery. Badly worded questions and concepts that are far from clear. IE they exist to make money for those that teach specific classes and write study guides.

STEM can be in the realm of possibility for anyone that has good teachers and good study habits. They do require memorization and the ability to apply skills learned. But far more people are capable of these skills.
Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did..So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.--Mark Twain
 
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Re: Opinion about elite universities like Caltech and MIT eliminating SAT admission test due to COVID?

Wed Apr 21, 2021 4:12 pm

I don't see the real value anymore. I knew people that had great grades, were brilliant and took longer to solve math problems than others, but tested poorly simply because they didn't take tests well. Especially a timed test. Who knows what it cost them in the long run. There are too many other metrics available to determine a students ability. We didn't have widely available AP courses when I was in school. I think my school only offered Math, Physics and English at the time, but some schools offered more. We had tracts. College Prep, standard courses and remedial. College prep, plus a good SAT/ACT got you in. Extracurricular was beneficial, but not required at the time. Top 10% in college prep pretty much meant you could go anywhere. AP classes were bonus credits. Remedial was a joke, but those students could go the the JC after and recover if they worked hard enough. Level of AP coursework is a better metric. Extracurricular has too much emphasis these days.
Funny. It only took one pandemic for those who argue endlessly about natural selection to stop believing in natural selection.

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