The SAT has been in the news regularly since announcing its new writing component. Most surprising is the fact that at present there are no plans in the foreseeable future to allow students to use computers to complete the essay portion of the test. Most students prefer writing on computers, and they also write better. I'm wondering if and when the College Board will reconsider this position.
It will be interesting to see how high school English teachers feel about preparing their students for this test. Does it mean that they should ask students to hand-write essays? Does this make using a computer for writing assignments less advantageous? What will be the effect on SAT scores, if any, of using computers for in-class writing assignments? I am beginning to hear teachers ask these questions.
It was good news to see a message on the Independent School listserv from Karl Haessler at Convent of the Sacred Heart in Greenwich, CT. He confirmed that ADA students are being allowed to write the essay portion of the SAT on computers using SecureExam software. (Information on ISED-L can be found at http://www.milton.edu/ISED-L/)
Another interesting article on the SAT essay appeared in the NY Times on May 4 ("SAT Essay Test Rewards Length and Ignores Errors" by Michael Winerip) claiming that there is a direct correlation between the length of an essay and the grade it receives. Makes you wonder. The fallout from this should prove interesting.