If you’re a high school student in the class of 2017, you may be wondering whether you should take the current format of the SAT (which debuted in March, 2005 and is scored on a 2400-point scale) or the new format of the SAT (scheduled to launch in 2016 and scored on a 1600-point scale). It’s a good question.
Our official recommendation for most students is that they should take not just the current version of the SAT and be prepared to take the 2016 SAT, but also the ACT. Granted this is a lot of tests to prep for, and many students will simply not have the time. But for those of us who work with students every day to help them get their college applications in order, we frequently see distinct differences in scores among the various tests available. So, if it’s at all possible, please consider taking two or three of the tests available to you.
However, it is also important to know whether the UCs will even accept the 2005 (2400-point scale) SAT, since you wouldn’t want to prep for it and take it for no reason. To find out, we recently emailed the UC Admissions department to find out. We received a prompt reply basically saying that they had not made an official decision yet, and please check back on their admissions website in the future to find out.
On a related note, the University of California has announced that the essay portion of the 2016 SAT will be required for admission.