Does SAT Prep Actually Work?
We dug into the data.
Rich parents will try to game every aspect of college admissions, but the SAT is arguably the hardest to manipulate. "coaching has a positive but small effect: Perhaps 10 or 20 points in total on the SAT, mostly on the math section" h/t
Razib 😈 Khan
every time someone brings up standardized tests as fairer than alternatives someone says "it costs a lot of money to prep, my parents spent a lot of $ on that!" 1-doesn't work
2-there r actually poor ppl who r just way smarter who don't need prep courses
Even Slate knows that SAT coaching doesn't do much. In the US, the net benefits of elite environments are small to modest. Not massive.
Nah, even Slate knows SAT test prep barely helps, 200 point gains are a fantasy
"SAT coaching has a positive but small effect: Perhaps 10 or 20 points in total...these effects cannot be distinguished from measurement error (When the College Board checks the noise in scoring on the SAT, it finds a standard error of 32 points)"
One argument you often hear against the SAT and similar tests is that wealthy parents pay for test prep. But did you know test prep really hasn't been shown to matter very much (or it doesn't matter much more than getting free books/resources)?
A New Radical Centrism
Private test preparation courses add only 30 points to your SAT score, on average. Therefore, the argument that SATs need to be abandoned because poor people can't afford these courses is mostly bogus. (Also, test prep books only cost $20.)