A new “adversity score” assigned by the College Board on the SAT exam will reportedly reflect students’ family income, environment and educational differences in an effort to level the playing field in the highly competitive college admissions process. The Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday that 50 schools used the new indicator as part of a beta test last year and the College Board plans to bring more than 150 schools into the fold this fall.
The College Board is a New York-based non-profit that is in charge of overseeing the SAT. A dialogue about wealth and privilege in educational institutions exploded this year in wake of the college admissions scandal, in which 33 parents were charged with paying huge sums of money to have their children cheat on the SAT and be admitted into top colleges under the false pretenses of being student athletes.
This new “adversity score” number is calculated by assessing 15 factors that can better help admissions officers determine an individual student’s social and economic background, the Journal reported. These factors are first divided into three categories: neighborhood environment, family environment and high school environment.