We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
The SAT was designed to produce a more egalitarian, less elitist American college student, yet few are ever really happy with it. I tend to view it roughly as an IQ test, but one which conflates the upper end to eliminate the upper outliers (it's not fair to the others to be too good).
...once the Ivy Leagues started trying to find the most promising non-upper class kids from the rest of the country, they needed something more objective about individuals than just grades. Another issue is that high school grades have certain inherent shortcomings. The future Nobelist in physics might not care about his social studies class and thus wind up with a lower overall GPA than the well-adjusted grind. Plus, grades have a ceiling. Even an A+ in physics doesn't really tell you that much. Moreover, lots of future successes are alienated in high school. Some people who get all As in high school might not have the upside to continue to do so in college. Incentives toward grade inflation at the high school are built in. And so forth ...
My son just took it and is about to retake it (despite doing moderately well. We figure he needs 100 more points to get into the college he wants to attend).
It is an IQ test, but one that can be gamed. $200 and a few classes on how to game it (conveniently offered by a local community college), and you can pretty much tack on a substantial number of points.
IQ tests can't be gamed, at least not as easily. They require logic and precision.
I don't know how I'd do on today's SATs, but I suspect much better than I did 32 years ago. I've found the prep questions to be almost humiliatingly easy. The questions I found difficult weren't hard because they required thought. They were hard because the language of the question itself was convoluted and designed to mislead. I was forced to re-read a number of these to be sure I answered correctly. That's hardly a test of knowledge.
Not sure what value the colleges find in the test itself, but hey - it's a gauge of something.
I don't know how I'd do on today's SATs, but I suspect much better than I did 32 years ago.
Bob Greene, formerly a columnist for the Chicago Tribune, once wrote a column on doing precisely that. He had scored around 700 on both the Math and Verbal sections of the SAT when he was in high school. Several decades later, the second time around, he scored 800 on the Verbal and around 500 on the Math. Greene reasoned that his Verbal score was a consequence of his work, where he was reading and writing all day long. By contrast, his high school math wasn't something he used on daily basis, if at all.
I believe that GRE and SAT scores are supposed to be about the same. When I took the computer version of the GRE, three decades after taking the SAT, my two scores were nearly 100 points higher than my old SAT scores.
SAT scores are overrated, at least from my perspective of having higher SAT/GRE scores than grades. As gross indicators they have some value. Someone who scores below 500 on the Math portion of the SAT would not be advised to become a mathematician or an engineer.
Anyone who took the SAT decades ago would do better today, as the scores have been normed up.
"The SAT was designed to produce a more egalitarian, less elitist American college student..."
Well, not exactly. They have been RE-designed with such purposes in mind, over decades. I suppose the older tests were "egalitarian" in a way, since they largely tested for the basic sort of thing - known as the Three Rs - which were/are supposed to be common to the one-room school and the exclusive prep school.
Oh, there were problems even fifty years ago when I took them. I recall a bit of a rumbling about a question involving a cup-and-saucer, with the claim that not everybody knows what the heck a saucer is, which after all is true.