The SAT Math Test: It's Rigged to Favor Boys?
From an email I received yesterday:
"Regarding the sexist Tierney article in the New York Times (featured Tuesday on CD), there's lots of evidence showing that a much larger part of boys' test scores is due to tricks. Studies show males take more risks than females, and the SAT rewards taking a risk by guessing when you don't know the answer. Thus, the SAT is rigged to favor boys this way because it rewards riskier test-takers and boys are more riskier than girls. Girls' unwillingness to risk getting a penalty for a wrong guess has been shown to significantly reduce their scores (Gender Bias in College Admissions Tests, Research by FairTest (January 14, 2009).
And of course the test favoritism shows when students actually try to apply their knowledge. That's why boys who get the same test scores perform worse than girls in college. For example, a 1995 University of CA, Berkeley study found that females with identical academic indexes as males earned higher grades in every subject including math and physical sciences. The report concluded that schools should add 140 points to the women's index because the SATs underpredicted their ability.
The SAT is rigged in many ways to favor boys. For example, the ETS did a study that found that girls' SAT scores improved dramatically when the time limit was removed but boys’ scores remained about the same. Since when the time pressure is removed, girls perform much better, the test is obviously testing things other than actual knowledge. This can be changed and the College Board is aware if it, but they have refused to make this minor change that would dramatically improve girls' scores in comparison to boys' scores. Thus, the people in charge of the test knowingly do things that favor boys."