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The SAT is a valuable part of the college admission process because it is a strong predictor of college success. We redesigned the SAT to offer greater insight into student performance, maintaining its strong predictive validity by:

  • Basing test design on a solid foundation of recent research.
  • Continually testing item types, test questions, essay prompts, and test forms.
  • Regularly reviewing student performance metrics.

Pilot Predictive Validity Study

With the help of colleges and universities, we conducted a pilot study of the predictive validity of the SAT in fall 2014. This study provided early evidence about the relationship of redesigned SAT scores to college grades.

In particular, we examined the validity of SAT scores alone and in combination with high school GPA to predict college grades. The findings follow:

  • The redesigned SAT covers the content and skills research shows matter most for college readiness — and it remains as predictive of college success as the old SAT.
  • Redesigned SAT scores improve the ability to predict college performance above high school GPA alone.
  • There is a strong, positive relationship between redesigned SAT scores and grades in matching college course domains, suggesting that the redesigned SAT is sensitive to instruction in English language arts, math, science, and history/social studies.

Sign Up for the National Predictive Validity Study

With the launch of the redesigned SAT, we’ll continue to document the relationship of performance on the assessment to outcomes of interest.

In partnership with colleges and universities, we are launching a longitudinal national SAT validity study to examine the relationship between SAT scores and college outcomes such as GPAs, course grades, persistence, and completion. The study will begin with the entering college class of fall 2017, the first cohort of students to primarily take the redesigned SAT. It will include extensive validity analyses by subgroup. The time frame for this work will be:

  • Before summer 2018: Institutions email us to participate in the study.
  • Fall 2018: Data file is received by the College Board, including completed data-sharing agreements.
  • 2019: Validity study is complete and distributed.