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ERIC Number: ED502721
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Sep
Pages: 56
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
Report of the Commission on the Use of Standardized Tests in Undergraduate Admission
National Association for College Admission Counseling
Standardized admission tests have become an increasingly important factor in undergraduate admission. At the same time, reforms in elementary and secondary education at both the state and federal level have elevated the importance of standardized tests as a tool to measure educational outcomes. Nevertheless, long-standing concerns with standardized tests have persisted, and the role of the ACT and SAT in determining who gains entry into the nation's colleges and universities continues to be a hotly debated topic and a growing number of postsecondary institutions have adopted "test-optional" admission policies. This Commission underscores that a "one-size-fits-all" approach for the use of standardized tests in undergraduate admission does not reflect the realities facing America's colleges and universities. The report focuses on five issues that affect all institutions, and offers recommendations related to the use of standardized tests in undergraduate admission and for more effective ways to serve all students: (1) Regularly Question and Reassess the Foundations and Implications of Standardized Test Requirements; (2) Understand Test Preparation and Take into Account Disparities among Students with Differential Access to Preparation and Information about Admission Testing; (3) Draw Attention to Possible Misuses of Admission Test Scores; (4) Establish Opportunities for Colleges and Universities, as Well as College Admission Counseling Professionals, to Educate Themselves about the Appropriate Use of Standardized Test Scores; and (5) Understand Differences in Test Scores among Different Groups of People, and Continually Assess the Use of Standardized Test Scores Relative to the Broader Social Goals of Higher Education. The report suggests that a possible future direction for college admission tests is widespread adoption of tests that more fully reflect subject matter from high school courses. Tests administered by states may provide valuable information for admission purposes, particularly in public institutions that predominantly serve a given state's population, although such tests must be designed to measure a proficiency level that is more reflective of college readiness than minimum competency. A bibliography listing 83 resources is included. (Contains 8 footnotes.)
National Association for College Admission Counseling. 1631 Prince Street, Alexandria, VA 22314-2818. Tel: 800-822-6285; Tel: 703-836-2222; Fax: 703-836-8015; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: National Association for College Admission Counseling
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: SAT (College Admission Test)