And the SAT Obsessions Continues

4 April 2015
A discussion of Nicholas Lemann’s view on the SAT test

This paper presents a detailed description and discussion about the SATs. The writer focuses on the expertise of Nicholas Lemann to draw comparisons and conclusions about the SAT and its place in society, colleges and class distinctions.
While Lemann has tried to correlate the test use growth with the attempt to bring forth women and minorities detractors say he has failed. Lemann also details the evolutionary events that lead to the test and the detractor’s claim he leaps to far from point to point. While critics are quick to point out what they believe to be holes in Lemann’s theory those who follow his beliefs insist they are valid. Each person has to look at the points Lemann makes and weigh it against what they believe to be the case. In this day of SAT scores being the most important factor to college acceptance it is hard to understand why detractors claim he is wrong. The college entrance system has a ranking that is heavily based on the scores a student achieves on the SATS. The SATS are achievement based, in both the verbal and the math portions. It is well known that there are areas of the nation in which students are not being given the advantages that students in other area high schools are given. Those students are usually minority groups. It is not a far leap from that already proven fact to the idea that the SAT has created an elite club with membership reserved for white middle class students only. Whether it was done on purpose is the only thing debatable and it doesn’t really matter. It needs to be fixed.

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