High school students demand SAT re-score over ‘shocking’ low scores, despite easier exam

Chris Enloe

High school students nationwide are demanding the College Board re-score the June SAT because they received lower-than-expected scores, according to NBC News.

What’s going on?

Students who took the college entrance exam last month are enraged because many received lower scores than previous attempts, despite having more correct answers compared to their previous examinations. Many students took to social media to vent their frustration over their scores.

Ashley Kim, a rising senior from New Jersey, told NBC News she spent more than 50 hours preparing for the June test. She hoped to bring her score up to 1500, so she would be competitive enough to receive admission to Yale or Harvard. Unfortunately, her June score dropped, despite receiving more correct questions in June than on previous attempts.

“I was really shocked and sad. I thought I prepped enough, but when I got the score, it was just shocking,” she said.

Marguerite Saunders, a 17-year-old from Washington, also experienced a lower score despite answering more questions correctly. She told the Washington Post the test is an unfair representation of her mathematic abilities.

“It’s not the most accurate representation of my math ability and the whole reason people take the SAT is to have an accurate representation,” she said.

So why the lower scores?

According to the College Board, which designs and scores the test, students received lower scores in June because the test was easier than normal, meaning each incorrect answer carried more weight in order to make the scores comparable with earlier SATs.

The College Board called the process “equating.” The organization said in a statement:

We understand your questions about your June SAT scores. We want to assure you that your scores are accurate. While we plan for consistency across administrations, on occasion there are some tests that can be easier or more difficult than usual. That is why we use a statistical process called “equating.” Equating makes sure that a score for a test taken on one date is equivalent to a score from another date. So for example, a single incorrect answer on one administration could equal two or three incorrect answers on a more difficult version. The equating process ensures fairness for all students.

According to NBC News, “equating” is a standard industry practice, which the College Board has utilized for decades.

Will there be a re-score?

No. College Board said the June SAT will not be re-scored. Only students who had test answers incorrectly marked wrong would be given a re-score.