The Redesigned SAT:

Getting Ready for Spring 2016

1) Relevant Words in Context

  • Students will be asked to interpret the meaning of words based on the context of the passage in which they appear.
  • Selected words will be those that students will use throughout their lives — in high school, college, and beyond.

2) Command of Evidence

  • Students will be asked to demonstrate their ability to interpret, synthesize, and use evidence found in a wide range of sources, including informational graphics (i.e., tables, charts, and graphs), as well as multi-paragraph passages from literature, the content areas and the world of work.
  • Reading Test: Students will determine what text best supports answers to previous questions; as well as integrate information from words and graphics to find the best answer.
  • Writing and Language Test Students will analyze sequences of sentences or paragraphs to make sure they are logical. They will also interpret graphics and edit a portion of the accompanying passage so that it articulates the information in the graphics.
  • The SAT Essay Students will analyze a source text to determine how the author builds an argument to persuade an audience through the use of evidence, reasoning, and/or stylistic and persuasive devices. They will be asked to write an effective analysis supported by critical reasoning and evidence drawn from the source.

3) Essay Analyzing a Source

  • Students will read a passage and explain how the author builds an argument to persuade an audience.
  • Students may analyze aspects of the passage such as the author’s use of evidence, reasoning, and stylistic and persuasive elements.
  • The essay prompt will be shared in advance and remain consistent. Only the source material (passage) will change.
  • This is a required component of the SAT for the Michigan Juniors who’ll take the test in spring of 2016.

4) Math that Matters Most

Three Essential Areas:

  • Problem Solving and Data Analysis: Quantitative literacy; using ratios, percentages, & proportional reasoning to solve problems in science, social science, and career contexts.
  • Heart of Algebra: Mastery of linear equations & systems
  • Passport to Advanced Math: Focuses on more complex equations and the manipulation they require.
  • Other math topics: i.e., geometric and trigonometric skills

5) Problems Grounded in Real-World Contexts

  • The Evidence-Based Reading and Writing section will include questions on literature and literary nonfiction, but will also feature charts, graphs, and passages
  • Students will be asked to edit and revise to improve texts from the humanities, history, social science, and career contexts-they will not simply correct errors.
  • The Math section will feature multi-step applications for students to to solve scenario-based problems in science, social science, career scenarios, and other real-life contexts.

6) Analysis in Science and in History/Social Studies

  • Students will be asked to apply their reading, writing, language, and math knowledge and skills to answer questions in science, history, and social studies contexts.
  • Students will encounter challenging texts and informational graphics in the Evidence-Based Reading and Writing section and the Math section.
  • Questions will require them to read and comprehend texts, revise texts to be consistent with data presented in graphics, synthesize information presented through texts and graphics, and solve problems grounded in science and social science contexts.

7) The Great Global Conversation and U.S. Founding Documents

Students will encounter passages from rich and meaningful texts and authors; for example:
  • The U.S. founding documents, including the Declaration of Independence, the Bill of Rights, and the Federalist Papers
  • Authors, speakers, and thinkers from the United States and around the world, including Edmund Burke, Mary Wollstonecraft, Nelson Mandela, and Mohandas Gandhi

8) No Penalty for Wrong Answers

What Does this Mean for Teaching & Learning?

  • Students will need to build "reading stamina."
  • Address fluency for those students who need it.
  • Students need many opportunities to practice close reading of complex text across the content areas
  • Students need support in developing academic language proficiency through speaking, listening, and close reading.
  • Students need opportunities to use evidence to inform, argue and analyze (write and speak with support from sources)
  • Staff should collaborate on reading strategies and academic vocabulary across the curriculum.
  • Departments should discuss what content-area reading students are experiencing and what they are doing to support students in navigating complex text.

Reading & Practice Resources for Content Area Teachers

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