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SAT testing goes digital in a shifting college admissions landscape

Posted at 8:20 AM, Jan 25, 2022

The administrators of the SAT say the exam will move from paper and pencil to a digital format. They say the shift will boost the test's relevancy in an increasingly test-optional college admissions landscape.

Test-takers will be able to use their own laptops. But, they will still have to take the test at a monitored site or in school.

The format change is scheduled to roll out internationally next year and in the U.S. in 2024. More colleges are letting students decide whether to include test scores in their college applications. The College Board, which administers the SAT, says most students still want to take the test to preserve the option.

SAT and its competitor the ACT have seen requirements for the tests in the admissions process for universities lessen in recent years, as USA Today reports, with the pandemic speeding up what's known as the test optional movement.

The new version will take an hour off of the original, shortening the sections for math, writing and reading to about two hours, the Associated Press reported.

As the National Center for Fair and Open Testing reports, the college admissions landscape is changing in various ways, with almost 80% of institutions that grant a bachelor's degree not requiring that students provide test scores for admission to the fall 2022 semester.