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SAT concordance table - compare old and new SAT scores

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Replies to: SAT concordance table - compare old and new SAT scores

  • PlotinusPlotinus Registered User Posts: 892 Member
    edited September 14
    Sorry to quibble again, but the fact that the new SAT scores of admitted students are lower than expected based on the concordance tables is NOT evidence that the new SAT is harder than the old SAT. For the most part, we are talking about two different populations: students who took the old test and students who take the new test. It is quite possible that skills in the second group are lower on average than skills in the first group. In fact, one of the main reasons that College Board revises the test every 10 years is to deal with the overall decline in skills (especially in verbal skills) by making the test EASIER (especially in the reading section). The only valid way to show that the new test is harder than the old test (or harder than would appear from the concordance table) is to sit down the SAME population and administer both tests to the SAME students. Try giving your son or daughter an old SAT and a new one, and see if he or she scores better on the old test than would be predicted by the concordance. See if he or she can do the sentence completions. This is the only valid measure.
  • bucketDadbucketDad Registered User Posts: 168 Junior Member
    edited September 14
    @Plotinus If you go back through this thread (or maybe others on CC), there are some examples of students who took both the ACT and the new SAT. When using the concordance table to convert the ACT to new SAT, the concorded score was almost always higher than the actual new SAT score. The evidence is anecdotal but interesting nonetheless.
  • suzyQ7suzyQ7 Registered User Posts: 2,920 Senior Member
    edited September 14
    @nostalgicwisdom I think you are saying that since the old SAT had the grammar, sentence structure type "English" questions in the Writing section (along with the mandatory essay) and many colleges ignored that section in their statistics (in many cases we saw them quote their old SAT scores as CR+M), that students that took the old SAT that were weaker in English/Grammer topics scored higher under the old. The new SAT includes the English/Grammar questions in the EBRW but excludes the essay (reported separately).

    In summary you are saying that CR+M in old SAT <> EBWR in new SAT and the difference is the grammar/English questions are in the new EBRW scores but not in the old CR+M scores. If so- I agree - and good point!

    Also, agree that the curve is certainly harsher at the upper end. Even compared to the ACT, which has a much small scale. In most cases, with the ACT Reading or English you can miss at least 2 and still get a 36!
  • PlotinusPlotinus Registered User Posts: 892 Member
    edited September 14
    @bucketDad
    As far as I know, the ACT organization has refused to accept the CB ACT-New SAT concordances. This is because the ACT-Redesigned SAT concordances were not produced by administering the ACT and the new SAT to the same group of students. Rather, the new SAT-ACT concordances were produced by stitching together the new SAT-old SAT concordances and the old SAT-ACT concordances, although each of these concordances was produced with a different population. Thus the methodology behind the CB RSAT-ACT concordance is invalid, as ACT has asserted. The only way to produce a statistically valid concordance is to give the two tests to the same population. While the ACT-new SAT concordances published by CB are completely bogus from a scientific point of view, I don't know whether adcoms are using them in the absence of any statistically valid alternative.
  • mdphd92mdphd92 Registered User Posts: 41 Junior Member
    The two tests do not necessarily have to be given to the same population, just equivalent populations. That is the basis of almost all scientific studies, where we have an experimental group and a control group that are equivalent, usually by some randomization procedure. In a social science study, where randomization is not feasible, the standard is usually to show that the two groups are equivalent by measuring them on various attributes. It might be interesting to give the two tests to the same group, but we would then have to make sure that half of the students see the old test first and then the new test second, and then vice versa for the other half.
  • evergreen5evergreen5 Registered User Posts: 91 Junior Member
    edited September 14
    The only way to produce a statistically valid concordance is to give the two tests to the same population.

    I saw that CB had planned a study in Dec 2015 upon which to base the concordance, but I can't find any more info about what that consisted of - I'm probably not be looking in the right place. Does anyone know whether CB ever gave the Old and New SATs to the same (and/or equivalent) population? (The often-referenced 2014 study was supposed to be for PSAT10 and PSAT/NMSQT, not the New SAT. The ensuing 2015 PSAT percentile issues do not inspire confidence...)
  • PlotinusPlotinus Registered User Posts: 892 Member
    I am not a statistician, but I looked into the methodology of the ACT-old SAT concordance some time back.
    Of course you can administer the two tests to two different populations if the populations are equivalent, but how do we know that they are equivalent? I doubt that test-takers in 2006 (the ones who took the ACT and SAT for the old concordances) are equivalent to test-takers in 2015 or whenever the new SAT - old SAT concordances were done.

    Even back in 2006, CB underlined that the concordances were of limited validity. However, at least back then CB claimed that the best concordance came from a group of students who had taken both tests.

    https://research.collegeboard.org/programs/sat/data/concordance
    The College Board and the ACT worked together to complete a study of all the students in the high school graduating class of 2006 who took both the ACT and the SAT.

    A concordance study and the resulting tables, which reflect data from a group of students who have taken both tests, provide the best possible estimated comparison.

    The ACT-SAT tables are based on an entire cohort of students who completed both tests, but this sample is not representative of all ACT or SAT test-takers. The tables, therefore, may not be appropriate for use with scores from students who take either ACT only or SAT only.

    Anyone know why CB and ACT have not produced a joint concordance study as in 2006?

    I think adcoms are aware that all concordances are of limited validity.
  • billcshobillcsho Registered User Posts: 16,131 Senior Member
    edited September 14
    After all, the current concordance table is not based on any population if students. Just hypothetical. It is just a tool to convince the adcom to use the new score and the students to take the new SAT instead of switching to ACT.
  • kimclan1kimclan1 Registered User Posts: 577 Member
    I'm confused. Could somebody shed some light on why both of these concordance tables for SAT to ACT released by the College Board are different?

    https://secure-media.collegeboard.org/digitalServices/pdf/sat/cSAT-concordance-flyer.pdf

    https://collegereadiness.collegeboard.org/pdf/higher-ed-brief-sat-concordance.pdf

    The first says that a 1540 equals a 35 ACT and the second on table 7 says that a 1540 equals a 34.
  • evergreen5evergreen5 Registered User Posts: 91 Junior Member
    @kimclan1 Your first link, dated 2015, appears to the old table from 2009, concording ACT and the Old SAT. The second link is the May 2016 concordance tables for the New SAT (note that ACT does not agree with this, unlike the old table, but many colleges appear to be using this anyway, particularly when setting levels for automatic scholarships).
  • hannuhyluhannuhylu Registered User Posts: 185 Junior Member
    It is pretty obvious that CC members dissect the information far more than colleges/adcoms do lol.
  • kimclan1kimclan1 Registered User Posts: 577 Member
    @evergreen5 Thanks that makes a lot more sense.
  • evergreen5evergreen5 Registered User Posts: 91 Junior Member
    edited September 21
    As described in another thread posted by @scoodoo1 , the College Board released 2017 percentiles for the SAT that are higher per score than the original, research-study-based 2016 percentiles. The 2017 percentiles are based on actual test scores from class of 2017. Should this affect the concordance tables?
  • billcshobillcsho Registered User Posts: 16,131 Senior Member
    I think it will affect the concordance tables. In the old days, the concordance tables were based on the students taking both ACT and SAT. The one posted from Collegeboard last year is hypothetical and ACT does not acknowledge it. Now with a real population data, even not from exactly the same population of students taking ACT, the concordance table should be revised. Without the acceptance by ACT, it is not a "concordance" table.
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