Amazing Facts You Will Get to Know About the New Digital SAT 2023
It's one of those "Just when you thought it was safe to go in the water" moments. The College Board has decided against printing future SATs on bamboo paper... and instead intends to go entirely digital! Sophomores and juniors, don't worry, you'll be fine... However, freshmen and younger students must BE AWARE!
Here's the most recent information on how the computer-based test will look:
1. The new SAT will be adaptive1, with the following additional features:
2. Briefer tests will last approximately two hours:
- On-screen calculator built-in (but you can still use your own!)
- A clock on the screen can help with time management.
- Simple switching between questions
- Math formulas are all in one place.
3. PSAT and international SAT begin in 2023, followed by the US SAT in 2024:
- Long reading passages will be eliminated.
- Questions those are more concise and straightforward
- Fewer questions, more time per question
- A calculator is permitted for all math questions.
- Scores are available in a matter of days, not weeks!
4. Tests will be given in schools and other locations, with more test date flexibility:
- The United States class of 2025 (current 9th graders) will be the first to be affected.
5. This news may hasten ACT's plans to go completely digital.
- You are free to use your device (or request to borrow a device from College Board for weekend testing)
- More school-day testing is not permitted.
- As a result, paper-and-pencil SAT testing will be obsolete. Here's what we know right now, and what we can expect to learn in the next eighteen months. We'll keep you updated as we learn more.
The new digital testing will be available outside of the United States in 2023. It will first appear in the United States for PSAT test takers in October 2023. In 2024, the digital SAT will be administered in the United States. The class of 2025, currently in 9th grade, will be the first in the United States to prepare for the new test.
Format that adapts
In general, "adaptive" means that the order of questions or sections is dynamic and adjusts based on the test-performance taker on previous questions. The first stage of a section will determine the level of difficulty for the questions in the section's second stage.
As a result, there will be two sections for Reading and Writing and two sections for Math. The second stage questions on your neighbor’s screen may be completely different! In the first stage, you'll see questions of varying difficulty. The new test's "multi-stage adaptive design" will time each stage within a section separately. This means that your performance in the early section stage will be critical in determining your potential.
Is there going to be a separate experimental section?
No, but there will be a few non-operational questions sprinkled throughout the test that will not count toward students' scores.
There is no word yet on specific test dates, but College Board is planning to offer the test at national testing sites on seven weekends per year, just as they do now. However, there will be more options for school-day testing dates. States, schools, and districts will be able to choose their test day or days within a testing window of several weeks beginning in 2024.
This is especially useful for schools that need to spread out testing for their students to provide necessary devices or have limited space. Currently, SAT School Day is available in both the fall (two dates in October) and spring (four dates in March and April). The PSAT-related assessments are available in both the fall and spring semesters. The College Board intends to continue offering opportunities in both the spring and fall and is working with schools to develop longer testing windows that fit their schedules.
College Board will provide technology only for weekend testing at national testing sites; for school-day testing, schools must use their own devices. You will be able to use your computers or tablets, as well as those provided by the testing center. Home testing will not be available (unlike those at-home AP exams early in the pandemic).
College Board currently offers its Question & Answer Service - the ability for students to receive a copy of the test they took, their answers, and the correct answers - for three national test dates (October, March, and May); this will no longer be the case. We lament the demise of the Question and Answer Service. There is no information on test fees as of yet.
SAT Digital Score Testing
The exam will keep the 1600 scale, with new scores equivalent to the current paper-based test - and still comparable to the ACT. The existing SAT-ACT concordance table will be used indefinitely, according to College Board, because the changes aren't significant enough to warrant a new concordance.
You'll appreciate receiving your results within a few days of taking the test. But here's the catch: you'll have to adjust to scoring that will most likely weight questions based on difficulty rather than scoring that simply counts correct answers regardless of question difficulty. The current SAT's fifteen sub-scores (which nobody cared about anyway!) are no longer available.
How are the results of the digital and current tests comparable?
The SAT will continue to measure the knowledge and skills that students learn in high school and that are most important for college and career readiness. The College Board is confident that the digital SAT will continue to be an accurate predictor of college success. Different raw-to-scale score conversions for the current SAT are an unavoidable result of the test equating process, which accounts for minor differences in test difficulty from form to form.
Similar psychometric procedures will be used for the Digital SAT
to link it to the current SAT and to maintain score comparability across different versions of the multi-stage adaptive tests. Students taking the digital SAT will receive a score that accurately reflects their ability and is comparable to the paper-and-pencil test.
Free Practice Resources
The College Board will continue its collaboration with Khan Academy to provide free online practice exams and preparation materials. By the end of the year, several full-length practice tests will be available on the testing platform. CB anticipates offering a similar number of practice tests as they do now.
Paper to SAT Digital 2023: No Duplication
No, the transition will be a plunge into unknown, potentially icy waters, with no time to prepare. The College Board hopes for a complete transition from paper and pencil testing to adaptive computer-based testing. The goal is to make testing more convenient for students, proctors, and school counselors. We do not yet know when the final paper-based SAT will be administered.
What about computer problems?
Before the test, you will download the digital testing application. During testing, you can return to questions within a given module as many times as you want before time runs out. This is not the same configuration as the AP tests in 2021. The College Board's digital assessment platform has been specifically designed to account for variations in WI-FI strength and continuity. If the internet goes down during testing, you will be able to continue without interruption. If your internet connection goes down during the test, you can continue testing without interruption and reconnect when you're ready to submit your results. You will not lose testing time or work if your connection fails.
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