Thursday, November 7, 2013

Abstract: Correlations Between SAT Scores and Potential Influential Factors

High school students must take the SAT and/or ACT before applying to college in the United States. SAT and ACT scores are considered important in determining a student’s acceptance to their desired school. However, some may argue that these standardized tests may be biased, and influenced by factors other than a student's abilities in math, reading, and writing. For example, does the parental status of the student (e.g. divorced, married, single) have any correlation with the scores? In this project, the Texas Education Agency's annual report on college admissions testing for high school seniors in public schools was used to create a visual representation of SAT combination reading and writing scores across the state. In order to create a map with an uninterrupted range of scores, versus simply an accumulation points, the data was interpolated. Statistical analyses compared the scores to important factors such as race and ethnicity, household income, parental status, etc. These analyses revealed significant correlations between SAT scores and the above factors, suggesting that the scores may not be an accurate assessment of student's math, reading, and writing scores. 

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