Changes Made to SAT

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The entity that devises the SAT says it's being brought up to date, but whether that lessens or heightens the fear factor has yet to be determined.

The College Board, which administers the SAT, says the alterations are needed to keep in step with the changing curriculum of high school and college students. College hopefuls will see several major modifications.

“The new SAT will feature a revamped math section that will include topics from third-year college preparatory courses," said College Board President Gaston Casperton.

The verbal portion will now be called the Critical Reading Section, but the biggest addition will be a brand new writing segment. Students will craft an essay that requires them to take a position on a topic and use reasoning to support it.

"Because of the new writing section, the test will take an additional 60 minutes, but students will have five minutes less time on both the math and critical reading sections.”

Despite the time constraints, officials say the test should not be any harder to take. Some prospective students have the option of taking the current version of the SAT until January of next year, but the new version will be put in place starting in March 2005.