Critics of standardized tests have had plenty of reasons to celebrate lately. More than three-quarters of colleges are not requiring the SAT or the ACT for admission this fall, an all-time high. MIT’s recent announcement that it is reinstating a testing requirement for fall 2023 admissions was a major departure from these recent trends. Just as striking, amid the widespread perception of standardized testing as an engine of inequality, was MIT’s rationale: “Not having SATs/ACT scores to consider,” MIT’s dean of admissions, Stu Schmill, wrote, “tends to raise socioeconomic barriers to demonstrating readiness for our education.”
Is the test broken and biased? Or, does it just reveal the brokenness and bias of our education system?
Solve the puzzles linked above to see the top arguments on both sides!
1. Both sides in this debate claim that they are trying to reduce social inequality. Which side’s argument is more persuasive on this point, and why?
2. Within this debate, who should we listen more to? Whose voice should have the most weight? Consider students, parents, educators, colleges, and even future employers.
3. How does your own personal experience affect your view on this topic?
4. Regardless of your own opinion on the matter, what is the best argument on the other side, and why?
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