new-sat-dyslexiaThe new SAT starts March 2016.

From the New York Times,

“What’s true of the writing section is true of the new SAT in general: There’s much more to read. “The most fundamental change is that there are many, many more words,” said Aaron Golumbfskie, education director for PrepMatters. “If you don’t read well and happily, this test isn’t going to be your friend.”

Even the math section will require more reading, with fewer questions based on equations and more word problems. Some prompts will present the same type of real-world situations that the Common Core emphasizes — “The recommended daily calcium intake for a 20-year-old is 1,000 milligrams (mg). One cup of milk contains 299 mg….” Mr. Golumbfskie describes the math section as “tighter in focus.” The current test covers a lot of ground, with a question or two on each topic; the new one will drill down into a few key areas. Geometry is fading out. Algebra is stepping up: Prepare for linear equations and inequalities, and systems of equations in two variables.

The addition of more-advanced math, such as trigonometry, means the test will cover material from a greater number of courses. That will make it more difficult for students to take the SAT early. Some questions will require knowledge of statistics, a course relatively few students take in high school. And because one math section will prohibit the use of a calculator, students who use them in class may want to practice tackling calculations with pencil and paper.”

Other key differences on this exam: no penalty for guessing, option to opt-out of essay, essays are now evidence-based, requiring students to quote from reading passages to prove their point. Other changes: the new SAT is a little bit shorter, back to 1600 point total scale instead of 2400, and vocabulary based on context.  For more detail about the new SAT from the College Board, click here.   Graphic

What’s the most important thing to know for college-bound dyslexic students planning to take the SAT? Request your accommodations early. The College Board follows ADA regulations, but the latest ADA regulations are very new. Allow enough time and be prepared to appeal if you are requesting accommodations and your testing was greater than 5 years ago.

Opting out? Look at this growing list of colleges and universities that don’t require the SAT: SAT Optional Colleges and Universities

**For PREMIUM SUBSCRIBERS:  We’ll be taking a deeper dive into what the new SAT means for college-bound dyslexic students and accommodation requests. In a follow-up article, we’ll also share our exclusive interview with the College Board Disability Office and answer your commonly asked questions. Don’t miss it and support the dyslexia community too!**