EdMedia Commons Archive

Is Half an ACT Better Than the Whole Show?

With rising grade inflation in high schools, many college admissions offices are increasingly looking at an applicant’s scores on standardized tests to determine how well he or she will might fit on campus. Of course, the SAT and the ACT face their own share of criticism.

For example, as covered by Inside Higher Ed, a study released this week reports that a student’s composite score on the ACT is a less accurate predictor of his first- and second-year grades than the use of just his scores on the math and English sections. The other two test sections used to create the ACT composite score, reading and science, had “little or no” relevance in predicting the student’s college success.

I’m curious to hear what other reporters on the higher ed beat do to cover such ACT/SAT news. How do you get beyond the numbers and scores to get to real stories? Given their importance in admissions and, to much lesser extent, college graduation rates, these can be a pivotal part of covering higher ed.

This post originally appeared on EWA’s now-defunct online community, EdMedia Commons. Old content from EMC will appear in the Ed Beat archives.