The College Board's yearly report on college and career readiness was released this week, and it shows that only 43% of college-bound seniors in 2012 are "college ready." The College Board defines "college ready" as achieving a benchmark score of 1550 on the SAT, which gives students a 65% likelihood of achieving a B- average during their first year at a four-year college.
“This report should serve as a call to action to expand access to rigor for more students,” said College Board President Gaston Caperton. “Our nation’s future depends on the strength of our education system. When less than half of kids who want to go to college are prepared to do so, that system is failing. We must make education a national priority and deliver rigor to more students.”
The report shows that 1.66 million students in the class of 2012 took the SAT. The College Board states that this is the largest class of SAT takers in history. However, the Associated Press (AP) points out that the ACT edged out the SAT by fewer than 2,000 students, indicating that it is growing even faster than the SAT. The ACT is, in general, more commonly taken by U.S. students in the South and Midwest, while the SAT is more common on the East and West coasts.
The College Board report also shows that scores in two of the three sections of the SAT are down for the 2012 test-takers. The average scores for the Critical Reading section have fallen 4 points to 496 since 2008 and average scores for the Writing section have dropped 5 points to 488 since 2008. Scores for the Mathematics section have remained steady at 514.