SAT examination to be held virtually; optional essay, subject tests obliterated amid pandemic

KATHMANDU: The College Board -- the official testing agency of the SAT examination -- has decided to conduct the examinations online, while also scrapping the optional essay section and supplementary Subject tests.

As per reports, the New York-based testing company notified of the changes in its testing system on Tuesday, while assuring to focus on the digital version of the main SAT section, which has already failed on one prior attempt.

According to the boards, the decisions have been taken in light of the pandemic situation and subsequent decrease in popularity of the additional essay section and Subject Test. Owing to closures of most testing centers due to the COVID-19 lockdown, in-person testing has been a distinct possibility, it said.

Due to technical difficulties, a digital version of the SAT examination had been scrapped in June. Moreover, a major number of American universities have made the admission requirement of the examinations optional for the time being and in some cases permanently as well.

Universities are reliant on the transcripts to assess the credibility of an applicant  for admissions. Similarly, scholarship considerations too have been adjusted accordingly.

The decision is expected to reduce load on the test takers as well as will decrease the financial burden as additional dollars are required for the optional essay section and supplementary subject tests.

The United States of America, which is the most affected nation by the COVID-19 pandemic with more than 24 million recorded cases as of today, still remains one of the most sought after destination for Nepali students for higher studies.