MIT Reinstates Standardized Testing Requirements for Admissions

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), announced this week that they would be expanding their offerings. reinstateApplication requirements for SAT/ACT. MIT reversed the trend of elite universities and reformed its admissions policy. Implemented in the 2020–2021 admissions cycle, which made standardized test scores optional. Administrators pointed out key problems with the “holistic” admissions system, which is a popular way to distribute open spots equally among students, regardless of their performance on standardized tests.

In the following: StatementMIT Dean of Admissions & Student Financial Services Stu Schill explained the reasoning behind the decision. He noted that standardized tests helped MIT better evaluate academic readiness of applicants and help to identify socioeconomically disadvantaged students that lack access or enrichment opportunities that could otherwise prove their readiness for MIT.

Without an objective measure like a standardized test, low-income students—who may not have equal access to other pieces of the holistic pie, such as a plethora of Advanced Placement (A.P.) classes or numerous extracurriculars—have a harder time proving that they are academically prepared for an MIT education. A move that was intended to increase diversity and help low-income students, as it turns out, mostly helps low-scoring wealthy students—and makes it harder to identify talented yet underprivileged applicants.

MIT is now different from all other universities elite UniversitiesSeveral universities have eliminated their SAT/ACT requirements over the past few years. CitingThe policy should be changed in light of COVID-19, diversity-related reasons.

These policies are based on the assumption that SAT scores and ACT scores can be used as a basis for their original logic. ConnectThis is because income correlates strongly with success, meaning that those from lower-income families are not granted admission to schools of choice simply because they cannot afford the SATs.

All applicants will need to rely on applications that have a higher correlation with income than standardized tests scores, like admissions materials. Essays. An 2021 Stanford study revealed that essays have a stronger correlation with household incomes than SAT scores. Therefore, it is possible to remove one income-correlated indicator and place one more directly related to income.

Although wealthy parents might be able pay for their test preparation, it is not possible. Take They will administer a standard test to their children (well. Nearly never). With the help of essay coaches and counselors, wealthy students’ college essays are tailored to suit what colleges want.

One factor few holistic admissions advocates recognize is the correlation between college readiness and family wealth. Not because those from upper-middle and middle income families are better qualified for higher education but because they have been able to afford tutoring and testing prep services.

The readiness gap between students of low and high income will never be closed by trying to change the variables used for college readiness. Narrative PushSome testing critics claim that there is not an academic skill gap between students of low and high income. It is the illusion created by tests (and some even). ClaimStandardized test questions can be too difficult for students of color who aren’t culturally savvy to grasp. It is possible to understand the test questions even though it can be uncomfortable. However, students who attend schools with low A.P. A student attending a poorly performing school will have a very different set of skills than a student going to a high-performing college. The problem isn’t the way we measure it, but the huge disparity in American primary and secondary school capabilities for their students.

MIT’s turn toward standardized tests will hopefully encourage other universities to reinstate their own standardized test requirements—a move that will actually help ambitious low-income students prove their exceptional talent, rather than making it harder to identify.