November 29, 2004
Apparently, people have been taking to the prescription drug adderal to do better on the SAT, and apparently its been working. This is supposed to be a drug given to kids with ADHD so they can sit still and not screw around in class, but it also seems to give a pretty good kick for people taking "tests of reasoning." Then again, isn't it more a test of how well you feel that morning anyway? Aren't the top pieces of advice given by those shady SAT prep classes and books to get a good nights sleep and to eat a good breakfast? If this is all you need to do then why did we waste the past 12 years of our lives in school? This seems to be a good routine for finding out how well kids take care of themselves.. but aren't these tests supposed to find out how well we can reason?
According to the article, College Board doesn't know that people are taking drugs to improve test scores and they don't have any rules prohibiting such behavior... Come on College Board! give me a break. I wouldn't be surprised if some College Board hotshots were bigtime investors in Pfizer or whoever makes the drug, because you'd have to be pretty blind to realize how ridiculous the SAT has become.
College Board has successfully monopolized the college admission market (if such a thing exists) and they're continuing to bulldoze through. They run the entire AP program and the SAT. Of course I know you're thinking that the IB program and ACT exists... but come on... how many people actually take them? Isn't the point of education to learn enough to make it in the complex world that we have created? Isn't the reason we have classes like history so that we don't repeat the mistakes of the past? Isn't the reason we have drivers ed so that people don't drive like maniacs and kill everyone on the road? Whats amazing is that kids now spend up to hundreds of dollars going to night classes so they can learn how to crack the test and get more questions right than the next guy.
How can this type of elitist system truly measure the qualification of a candidate for college? Sure most would say there are other considerations from the SAT, but College Board has done a pretty good job of burning this idea into everyone's brain that SAT scores determine who you are as a person. And this has inevitably led to people doing anything, regardless of their physical or mental health, to ensure that they do well. Of course, I hate the think of the day when people have to pee in a cup before they're allowed to take the SAT on a Saturday morning, but maybe thats what we've come to? Without some type of change the elites will continue to use their shysty tactics to succeed on these tests and take the scholarship money away from those truly qualified, while the more blue collar student will continue to struggle, until everyone starts popping pills and they all equal out again.