The Senate E-12 Finance Committee heard two presentations on Wednesday focused on changes to two major college entrance exams.

Redesigning SAT Standards

Aaron Lemon-Strauss from the National College Board presented information on the SAT exam. He explained that there was a need to redesign the standards. They have partnered with Khan Academy to increase online opportunities.

More students use Khan than any other commercial training platform. It allows for targeted continuous practice to help students get what they need to succeed. Data shows an increase of 60 – 200 points in scores based on the student’s efforts. The program has helped remove income and racial disparities and covers the Minnesota state graduation standards.

ACT Online

This was followed by a presentation from the ACT academy on the online testing program. Their program focuses on STEM and uses resources from NASA, PBS, Geo-Gera and the Khan Academy. It allows for students to select their preferred learning experience and focuses on specific areas where students need help.

They use videos to help practice and account for numerous learning styles. The student experience is ready to launch on March 22 and they hope to have the parent/teacher experience ready by August.

Both presentations pointed out that these online experiences had a significant effect on helping all students achieve higher college entrance scores. Both systems can map out tests to fit individual state requirements and some states use them for their 11th grade standards.