Standardized testing looks different, but it remains critical for students

Anushka Singh, Staff Writer

As schools continue to navigate uncertainties due to the coronavirus, the most challenging task is to hold the SAT testing in their centers. However, the top priorities for the College Board are the health and safety of students and educators.

“Masks aren’t supposed to be worn for continuous periods of time,” said Rahaf Mohammed, senior. “Imagine wearing a mask for more than 3 hours; it would be really uncomfortable and annoying but I understand that it is necessary.”

The SATs and the ACTs, standardized tests that serve as a gateway to college for millions of applicants each year, have already been postponed 5 times since March 2020. Many schools are offering testing during the month of October. In these challenging times, the test centers and students are bound to accept some challenges and are imposing new limits on the students.

Of test centers initially scheduled to administer the tests, only 65% are open in October, though some have reduced the capacity. All students and staff are required to wear masks throughout the exam and must be seated 6 feet apart during testing.

If students are not feeling well on test day, they can stay at home. Students can transfer their registration to another test date at no charge. If they would rather cancel their registration, they’ll be issued a full refund.

While most colleges are abandoning–at least for this year—SAT/ACT requirements for students, demand to take the tests is still high. Many students assume (despite what many colleges say) that their chances for admission will be reduced if they don’t take the exams.

“I think that colleges eliminating the SAT scores for this year’s admission is a good idea because many students are not well prepared due to certain circumstances and might not feel completely proud of their scores,” said Vania Chavez, senior. “However, I do believe that my chances would be reduced of getting into a university as SAT scores do have a certain advantage.”

I wish you weren’t reading another article dealing with the COVID-19 impact on school, testing, and college admission. But as the situation continues to develop, we need to adjust and make plans.

The test dates are approaching and it is very important for seniors and certain juniors to take these standardized tests. As a part of this society, we should come together as one during testing times like now and support and encourage every one of our classmates, students, and children. Console them it’s normal to feel anxious, and you have to not give up.

“It’s the most important exam we give in our high school years and if this messes up, I am just going to lose all my spirit and get motivated no more. I am quite tense, especially when it kept on postponing this year,” said Nandini Patel, senior.

This generation is experiencing a once-in-a-lifetime experience, and people are doing the best they can to facilitate things for themselves and others. It’s a great learning time with dozens of innovative ideas getting into action and transforming this world for the better.

We are not only changing our ways, which were then considered “normal” but we all are also growing as individuals. Time goes by quickly and the only way to match its pace is to be spontaneous with what it brings along the journey of our life and dare ourselves. So, let’s dare to make something positive out of it because we are all in this together.