SAT scores decline in Indiana, nation

Indiana’s average score on the SAT college entrance exam declined in 2007.

According to the Department of Education, statewide the scores had a one point drop on the reading section (497), two point decrease on mathematics (507) and three points lower on the writing section (483) for a combined score of 1487. Nationally, the average reading score dropped one point (502) while math (515) and writing (494) each fell three points for a combined score of 1511.

“The latest SAT scores are clearly disappointing, especially at a time when more Hoosier students are taking challenging high school courses and going on to college than ever before,” Superintendent of Public Instruction Suellen Reed said. “SAT scores may be trending downward nationwide but that does not make these results any less of a concern.”

Reed noted that the recent SAT results disrupt Indiana’s long-running trend of steady progress on the test for more than two decades. Despite a two-year decline, Indiana has gained 32 points since 1990 and narrowed the performance gap with the nation from 29 points to 13 points over that period.

Indiana’s SAT results mirror a nationwide trend with the vast majority of states experiencing score decreases for the past two years. The College Board – the organization that develops and administers the college entrance exam – has yet to issue an official explanation for the recent nationwide score decline.

There are changes being proposed for the future editions of the SAT:

Math – The new SAT eliminated quantitative comparisons and places an increased emphasis on Algebra II content.
Reading – Previously called “Verbal,” the new Critical Reading section eliminated analogies and now includes additional paragraph-length reading passages.
Writing – The new writing section includes a student written essay and a multiple choice grammar and usage section.

The Department of Education released school by school results for the test. You can download the file by clicking on the SAT Results link near the top of the page.

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