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Old 10-13-2022, 07:27 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Arktikos View Post
You might be on to something there. As the article in orginal post mentioned, and I will quote below, this trend started several years before Covid.

One local HS science teacher requires students to turn in their cellphones during class time. I'm all in favor of that.

I helped proctor the PSAT test yesterday. It was a good turnout, but many kids "finished" the last portion, math calculator section, well before the 45 minutes alloted had expired. Obviously, they didn't know how to do many of the problems.

"..The big picture: ACT test scores have been on the decline for at least five years, Godwin said, adding that it is "a worrisome trend that began long before the disruption of the COVID-19 pandemic, and has persisted."

"These declines are not simply a byproduct of the pandemic. They are further evidence of longtime systemic failures that were exacerbated by the pandemic."
The number of students taking the ACT has declined 30% since 2018, AP reports..."
There was more of a push in the schools to get ALL students to take the ACT/SAT - even the ones who had no intention of going to college. I think that could have played a role in the scores dropping. But I don't know that Colleges saw a dramatic drop in the scores of their accepted incoming freshmen.

When the pandemic happened fewer students were taking the ACT/SAT and those with low scores tended to drag down the average. But I still don't think that the colleges have seen a dramatic drop in the scores of their accepted incoming freshmen. Or if they have, they aren't bragging about it.
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Old 10-13-2022, 08:02 PM
 
16,168 posts, read 14,677,227 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by springfieldva View Post
There was more of a push in the schools to get ALL students to take the ACT/SAT - even the ones who had no intention of going to college. I think that could have played a role in the scores dropping. But I don't know that Colleges saw a dramatic drop in the scores of their accepted incoming freshmen.

When the pandemic happened fewer students were taking the ACT/SAT and those with low scores tended to drag down the average. But I still don't think that the colleges have seen a dramatic drop in the scores of their accepted incoming freshmen. Or if they have, they aren't bragging about it.
I have bad internet and can't dig around much....but it seems scores, tests taken and participation rates have all been dropping. I'd expect shrinking participation rates to yield upward pressure on scores.
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Old 10-13-2022, 09:03 PM
 
9,452 posts, read 5,342,241 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EDS_ View Post
I have bad internet and can't dig around much....but it seems scores, tests taken and participation rates have all been dropping. I'd expect shrinking participation rates to yield upward pressure on scores.
The opposite has actually been true. I am at the tail end of Gen X and the SAT underwent significant changes during this time. They first changed the format in 1994 and recentered it in 1995 to achieve a desired median score of 1000 up from around 900. There weren’t all that many of us and I don’t think I knew anyone who took private SAT prep courses. My HS did offer a summer school prep course at low cost and IIRC, a lot of my classmates did end up going to the most elite schools. Obsession about getting a high SAT just wasn’t a thing then because you actually weren’t competing with thousands of other kids with astronomical test scores and perfect grades. By the time the millennials were getting into college, it seems like scores had gone way up. My sister was within that group and scores generally seemed to be much, much higher.

I’m not sure there is a huge benefit to the focus on the high test scores. I think that high GPA + low test score people can be just as successful so long as a score threshold is reached. I was in an apartment with 3 other people. Three of us were in the honors college and one was not. The one who was not in the honors college went onto become a tenured professor at a state university, while the one who had the highest SAT score seems to have had a flaky on and off HS teaching career.
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Old 10-13-2022, 10:09 PM
 
16,168 posts, read 14,677,227 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RamenAddict View Post
The opposite has actually been true. I am at the tail end of Gen X and the SAT underwent significant changes during this time. They first changed the format in 1994 and recentered it in 1995 to achieve a desired median score of 1000 up from around 900. There weren’t all that many of us and I don’t think I knew anyone who took private SAT prep courses. My HS did offer a summer school prep course at low cost and IIRC, a lot of my classmates did end up going to the most elite schools. Obsession about getting a high SAT just wasn’t a thing then because you actually weren’t competing with thousands of other kids with astronomical test scores and perfect grades. By the time the millennials were getting into college, it seems like scores had gone way up. My sister was within that group and scores generally seemed to be much, much higher.

I’m not sure there is a huge benefit to the focus on the high test scores. I think that high GPA + low test score people can be just as successful so long as a score threshold is reached. I was in an apartment with 3 other people. Three of us were in the honors college and one was not. The one who was not in the honors college went onto become a tenured professor at a state university, while the one who had the highest SAT score seems to have had a flaky on and off HS teaching career.

Per your first line. I know.......decreasing scores and decreasing participation rates yield a double dose of bad news.


Test scores mean more than grades for several reasons.

1. Grade inflation - the average high school graduate's GPA has increased .19 grade pts. over the last ten years per the ACT people.

2. Rigor, exposure and expectation levels vary tremendously across US high schools .

3. At every level more students have excellent grades than excellent test scores.

4. As a long time college professor and friend once said SAT/ACT scores help tell us which of the legion of HS grads with re-calculated 3.75-4.00GPA belong at Harvard, Duke, Stanford, Vandy, Wash U. etc. and which belong a CC or in remedial studies.

5. Maybe most importantly test scores help separate the dreamers from those with a real shot per STEM degree pursuits. Any kid who does not do well on SAT/ACT math has no real legitimate shot at engineering, math, chemistry, biology, computer science, physics, economics and sneaky math heavy areas like finance, etc.
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Old 10-14-2022, 01:10 AM
 
82,609 posts, read 39,795,452 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EDS_ View Post
I have bad internet and can't dig around much....but it seems scores, tests taken and participation rates have all been dropping. I'd expect shrinking participation rates to yield upward pressure on scores.
Exactly, as those taking the test are increasingly the self-selected best (otherwise, why take it? many colleges don't require test scores anymore), the average score should be rising. But the exact opposite is happening.
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Old 10-14-2022, 02:45 AM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
31,457 posts, read 51,904,192 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by perennial millennial View Post
What is the cause? Can it be fixed?
1) Let's see how the USA scores compare to other countries taking SAT and ACT to enter USA college (should they still desire / be allowed), and determine if we (USA) are gapping UP or DOWN

2) Consider outsourcing USA EDU to countries who are improving their EDU output.

Outsourcing EDU should be a LOT less expensive than we currently pay.
Over 50% of my property taxes go to public schools, which equals $50k/yr combined in 3 states, basically more than I earned / yr for most of my career. Should be adequate.

I prefer to hire employees who were schooled internationally. I don't have to spend so much time and money educating them
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Old 10-14-2022, 07:32 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EDS_ View Post
Per your first line. I know.......decreasing scores and decreasing participation rates yield a double dose of bad news.


Test scores mean more than grades for several reasons.

1. Grade inflation - the average high school graduate's GPA has increased .19 grade pts. over the last ten years per the ACT people.

2. Rigor, exposure and expectation levels vary tremendously across US high schools .

3. At every level more students have excellent grades than excellent test scores.

4. As a long time college professor and friend once said SAT/ACT scores help tell us which of the legion of HS grads with re-calculated 3.75-4.00GPA belong at Harvard, Duke, Stanford, Vandy, Wash U. etc. and which belong a CC or in remedial studies.

5. Maybe most importantly test scores help separate the dreamers from those with a real shot per STEM degree pursuits. Any kid who does not do well on SAT/ACT math has no real legitimate shot at engineering, math, chemistry, biology, computer science, physics, economics and sneaky math heavy areas like finance, etc.
I don’t disagree with 4 and 5 to the extent that a baseline score is going to be needed to be successful in college. A person with a 1000 SAT, 550 math, and a 5.0 weighted GPA is probably not going to be the best candidate for majoring in computer science at Stanford. However, to the extent that these schools may be dealing with students who are making in the 1400-1500 range instead of the 1500+ range, I am not sure that that score differential will make a huge difference. At least in my time, there were not a lot of kids in my program who did spectacularly on the SAT, but some without the spectacular scores have gone on to have good careers in medicine and other STEM fields. I had a high school nemesis (reason not relevant here) and know he did worse than me on the SAT and has since gone on to become a pulmonologist. I don’t remember his distribution of scores.

I think 1200 was a baseline of scores in my program, but I’m fairly certain my best friend got a lower score than that and is probably more of the type of student of concern. She was a salutatorian at a very rural school. While she’s since switched careers, she worked for something like 15-17 years in a pharmaceutical lab and left due to ethical differences with her employer. She was quite good at her job and I don’t get the impression that she struggled with her coursework in college. There are some people who are simply poor standardized test takers, and I think she is one of them.
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Old 10-14-2022, 07:52 AM
 
2,068 posts, read 777,967 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by perennial millennial View Post
What is the cause? Can it be fixed?
Equitable equity is the cause, where all grades are made equally high and all schools are made equally sh*tty.
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Old 10-14-2022, 03:38 PM
 
Location: NMB, SC
29,311 posts, read 9,757,434 times
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You know what will really happen ? The ACT will be "recalibrated" like the SAT, which is going to be recalibrated yet again for 2024.

So the scores will be "high" again and everyone can celebrate.
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Old 10-14-2022, 08:17 PM
 
Location: New Albany, Indiana (Greater Louisville)
11,969 posts, read 24,194,664 times
Reputation: 12092
Across the board K-12 has been a disaster since Covid lockdowns. City next to me had over 50 school aged kids murdered since Jan 2020.
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