Cheating Barn Door Left Open by New SAT Security Rules

for further information:

Bob Schaeffer          (239) 395-6773
                 mobile     (239) 699-0468                                                        

                            

for immediate release, Wednesday, February 22, 2017

NEW COLLEGE BOARD EXAM SECURITY RULES
LEAVE SAT TEST FORM RECYCLING
“BARN DOOR FOR CHEATERS” WIDE OPEN

Additional security procedures for the SAT unveiled today fail to address a major cause of global test cheating --  the reuse of questions previously administered in the United States -- according to the National Center for Fair & Open Testing (FairTest).

The SAT’s sponsor, the College Board, promoted the new rules as it cancelled some scores from the January 2017 international SAT due to cheating.

“Failing to end SAT ‘recycling’ leaves a barn door for cheaters wide open,” charged FairTest Public Education Director Bob Schaeffer. “It is not enough to ‘reduce reuse,’ which is as far as the College Board statement goes, no matter how many other test security rules are put in place.”

Documents previously released by FairTest show that SAT questions from U.S. tests are frequently reused overseas. Test prep companies and brokers find ways to access these items and sell them to clients. “Students who have prior knowledge of exam content obviously gain a huge leg up,” Schaeffer explained 

SAT scores from international tests were cancelled or delayed at least eight times in the past four years because of test security concerns. In many of these cases, FairTest received copies of exam questions from sources in Asia before they were administered.

Schaeffer continued. “With instantaneous communication via Facebook, Snapchat, private messaging and dark web sites, there is no way to prevent SAT items from being circulated globally once they have been administered. If FairTest had advance access to test content, so did many others”

“The best way to stop unethical test-prep companies and individuals from gaining advance knowledge of upcoming test items is to stop reusing test questions,” FairTest’s Schaeffer concluded.

- - 3 0 - -