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Davis, California

Tuesday, May 28, 2024

UC needs to consider these alternates for the SAT, ACT

They’re not much better, but hey, why not?

Last month a judge ruled that UC must suspend SAT and ACT scores in admissions and scholarship decisions. Apparently, there is little data to show that standardized tests are an effective way to predict academic success in college. Yes, you heard that right; the ability to correctly complete odd analogies between words you never use doesn’t determine how smart you are.

While the ruling has been stayed temporarily, colleges across the country, including the UC system, have been slowly moving toward making the SAT and ACT irrelevant to college admissions decisions. This has only been accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic, which has caused cancellations of these tests.

I am an opponent of the SAT and ACT for completely objective reasons that definitely don’t stem from the fact that my sister did better than me on these tests. I do believe, however, that part of a holistic approach to college admissions should include a test that is a poor predictor of future success. Below are some of my suggestions for alternative tests for the UC to use for admissions. 

This One Buzzfeed Quiz: This quiz is titled “If You’ve Eaten 28/36 Of These Foods, You’re Potato’s Number One Fan.” I have met too many people at this school who claim to be potato’s number one fan and I know they aren’t. You may be wondering how in the world a preference for potatoes is related to academic success. In fact, there have been no studies done on this topic, so let’s just go with it. 

Rice Purity Test: If I was running an institution of higher education, would I like to know the sexual experience of my prospective students? Absolutely. I would like to know whether or not a prospective student has committed an act of bestiality. We don’t want that here. Lord knows what they’d do to the cows… or the turkeys… oh God.

Emergency Broadcast System Test: If you are willing to sit through that god-awful noise that comes through on your radio without changing the station, your soul is dead and you’re ready for the college experience.

Pregnancy Test: This, to me, might be the best alternative. What did you do in high school? Oh you were in the high school play? Oh, what instrument did you play? The flute, cool. Do you happen to create the miracle of life? We want miracle workers at our institutions.  

Now at this point I know many readers are saying, “What on God’s green earth are you thinking? You can’t be serious.” To answer that question. I’m not. This is the humor section, however, and wouldn’t it be funny if you didn’t get into a college because of some arbitrary test?

Written By: Ean Kimura — etkimura@ucdavis.edu

(This article is humor and/or satire and it’s content is purely fictional. The story and or names of “sources” are fictionalized.)


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