GCPS' 2006 SAT test-takers top state and national averages on new SAT









GCPS' 2006 SAT test-takers top state and national averages on new SAT

Gwinnett County Public Schools released SAT scores for the Class of 2006, the first to take the new version of the SAT, featuring a writing section. Gwinnett test-takers topped state and national averages on all sections (critical reading, math, and writing) of the test.

SAT Highlights
-- Gwinnett’s average composite score on the SAT is 1541, a combination of the average critical reading score of 508, the average mathematics score of 532, and the average writing score of 501. (Possible scores range from 200 to 800 on each section. The highest possible composite score is 2400.)
-- Gwinnett’s total SAT average is 23 points above the national average of 1518. This is the largest margin ever between Gwinnett scores and the national average.
-- Gwinnett’s average is 64 points above the Georgia average of 1477. This too, represents the largest margin ever between Gwinnett scores and the state average.
-- Gwinnett’s SAT-takers set the system’s highest-ever score in mathematics. The county average of 532 is 36 points above the state’s average score and 14 points above the national average.
-- Gwinnett’s average critical reading score of 508 is 14 points above the state’s average and five points above the national average.
-- On the new writing portion of the test, Gwinnett’s average score of 501 is 14 points above the state and four points above the national average. The scoring on the SAT writing test is similar to Gwinnett’s High School Gateway assessment taken first in the 10th grade. Writing across the curriculum continues to be a strong focus in Gwinnett.
-- A higher percentage of students take the SAT in Gwinnett than in the state or nation. Preliminary figures indicate that approximately 82 percent of GCPS seniors took the new test, compared to 48 percent nationally.

The New SAT—How is it different?
The Class of 2006 was the first to take the new version of the SAT. Several things differentiate the new test from previous tests, including:
-- The new SAT features a writing section. Students are asked to take a position on an issue and use reasoning and examples taken from their previous in and out of class experiences to support the position.
-- The critical reading test actually is more than a name change from the previous verbal section of last year's SAT. Reading passages are longer and require a deeper understanding of both vocabulary and contextual understanding.
-- The mathematics section included questions testing students’ knowledge of Algebra II, an area not assessed in the previous version of the SAT.

Individual school results and system results are attached. Individual school averages can be greatly affected by the unique characteristics of each year’s test-takers. In addition, the College Board has indicated that when a new test is introduced that students usually vary their test taking behavior in a variety of ways that could affect scores. For example, the College Board says that the most notable change in test-taking behavior this year involved a decrease in the number of students retaking the test. Typically, students who take the test a second time see a 30-point increase on their combined score.