The student news site of James Bowie High School

The Dispatch

The student news site of James Bowie High School

The Dispatch

The student news site of James Bowie High School

The Dispatch

Mental health awareness should be prioritized in all schools
Mental health awareness should be prioritized in all schools
Sally Martinez, J1 Reporter • April 22, 2024

Mental health takes a toll on students all over the world. It disrupts how they learn and retain that information. So, why is it not a big deal when schools see an increase in lower grades and moody students?...

Dull to colorful with new murals
Ryan Zuniga, Dispatch Reporter • April 19, 2024

Along the heavily populated hallway is the second mural within the fine arts wing. Over spring break a local graffiti group, Color Cartel, led and established by artist Andrew Horner, created the...

Distinguished Sites Banner

Students and staff prepare for College Board changes

In+the+new+online+PSAT+and+SATs%2C+the+time+to+complete+the+tests+have+been+shortened%2C+but+both+previously+separate+math+sections+are+now+combined+and+a+built-in+calculator+is+always+available.
Iola Bidwell
In the new online PSAT and SAT’s, the time to complete the tests have been shortened, but both previously separate math sections are now combined and a built-in calculator is always available.

Testing is a vital part of education and is used to show that you understand the subject. Test scores are also used by colleges to choose who they accept. Because of this, streamlining the testing process is important for both the test taker and administrator to get the most information out of their efforts.

The College Board organization, which administers college-associated tests like the SAT and AP tests, has recently made changes to the rubric for certain tests and the way they are taken. Changes to some AP exams have been made to increase the rate of students passing the test. Both the SAT and PSAT tests are now being taken on Chromebooks.

“We’re still doing mostly paper and pencil AP exams, but all of our STAAR exams have been digital for about the last five years,” campus testing coordinator Wendy Escobedo said. “Our PSAT recently went digital in October, and we’ll give our first digital SAT this spring.”

The written PSAT/SAT consisted of four sections: A reading section, a writing and language section, math with a calculator, and math without a calculator. Now that the test is digital, the layout has been changed. The time to complete the test has been shortened, but both math sections are now combined and a built-in calculator is always available. The reading section and writing and language sections have not been changed.

“In October, College Board’s platform went down nationwide during the PSAT. So while there are things that we have less control over that make it harder to administer the test, having fewer materials on campus makes it easier,” Escobedo said. “It was not the school’s choice, but we’re definitely happy to see it going in that direction.”

For the first time, Bowie is offering the AP pre-calculus course instead of the advanced pre-cal class. This means students will be able to buy into an AP test that will give college credits to those who pass. This test is still taken on paper due to certain written notations that are required to solve problems.

“There aren’t a ton of schools that are offering AP pre-cal, but we’re one of them,” math teacher Kelly Flickinger said. “We wanted to get in right at the beginning because we do have seniors that are taking pre-cal and want to graduate with a college-level class.”

Last September, College Board changed the rubric for the AP U.S. History exam. This comes after last year’s AP U.S. History exam had only 47.5% of students pass, the lowest rate of any AP history course, and the second lowest across all AP exams.

Both DBQ (Document-Based Questions) and LEQ (Long Essay Questions) scoring have been adjusted to give students higher scores without having to meet as many requirements as before.

“The changes make it a lot easier to pass, and there’s a higher possibility of earning that college credit,” junior Peyton Brunner said. “As long as you’re studying and keeping up with the lessons, it’s a good test to take. I’m pretty confident I can pass.”

Leave a Comment
Donate to The Dispatch
$225
$750
Contributed
Our Goal

Your donation will support the student journalists of James Bowie High School. Your contribution will help cover our annual website hosting costs. Any contributions made through this service are NOT tax deductible. If you would like to make a tax deductible donation OR to subscribe to our print edition, please contact us at [email protected].

More to Discover
Donate to The Dispatch
$225
$750
Contributed
Our Goal

Comments (0)

Comment and tell us what you thought of the story:
All The Dispatch Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *