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College Board Backpedals - No Adversity Score to be Added

August 30, 2019
by Susan Dutca-Lovell
College Board Backpedals - No Adversity Score to be Added

College Board is ditching its previous plan to capture socioeconomic information from students with a single score - also known as an "adversity score" - when scoring their SAT college admissions test. The score would have taken into account a student's socioeconomic background and the neighborhood in which they grew up.

The backtrack comes after much backlash that followed the initial announcement. College Board is responding to the "will of the public and agreed with the consensus that they shouldn't be in the business of scoring adversity, only merit and achievement." "We felt that people were right when they said you should not be scoring this," stated College Board CEO David Coleman. When asked how the board prevents unfair advantages for certain students, Coleman said that they can only provide young students with the tools, and then allow their parents and families to inspire them the rest of the way.

Instead of having an adversity score, College Board is launching a tool called Landscape, which will provide admissions counselors with information about a student's background, such as average neighborhood income and crime rates; the data points will not be given a score. The College Board will allow college officials do their own analysis from the government information it provides along with SAT Scores, according to NPR. Coleman claims that "...the founding mission of the College Board is it's not about your connections, it's not about who you know. It's about the work you've done."

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