My best guess for why the SAT is falling out of favor, as exemplified by it getting Cancelled at the U. of California campuses, would be what you see in this 2019 graph by Unsilenced Science:
Namely, Asians have been pulling away from everybody else on the SAT college admissions test, especially since David “Common Core” Coleman got his hands on the SAT a few years back, opening an unprecedented 100 point lead over whites in the last couple of years.
But the news media practically never ever mentions this 20-year-long development in Asian average test scores pulling away from everybody else like Secretariat in the Belmont.
It just doesn’t fit into the reigning worldview. Nonetheless, I think at the level of upper middle class white parents with kids in high school, their growing awareness of Asian Supremacy is a big deal, and is a major cause of growing white disenchantment with the SAT, even though it is almost never phrased in those terms. Are the Asians genetically superior, culturally superior, or are they cheating more? Nobody knows for sure, but whites are increasingly seeing the SAT as a game they are destined to lose at to Asians.
At the University of California schools, Asian dominance of undergraduate admissions is pretty obvious. For example, here is the demographics of the #3 prestige college in the system. UC San Diego in paradisiacal La Jolla.
Asian Americans make up 37% of undergrads versus only 19% of white Americans. But another 19% are international students, most of them Asian, so Asians probably outnumber white about 2..5 to one at UC San Diego among undergrads.
Going to UC schools isn’t as super cheap anymore as when I got an MBA from UCLA and our valedictorian asked for a round of applause for the taxpayers of California for subsidizing our educations so munificently. But still …
Making college admissions more subjective seems like it would hurt white parents in Santa Monica less than it would hurt Asian parents in Arcadia, because upscale whites are cooler than upscale Asians. Santa Monica parents can invent and follow new fashions in college application “Me!” essays that are more appealing to Berkeley admissions staffers than what Arcadia parents can come up with for their kids.
Let’s see what answers the New York Times news section comes up with to these questions:
Why Is the SAT Falling Out of Favor?
The University of California will no longer use SAT and ACT scores in admissions decisions. Critics say the tests put less wealthy students at a disadvantage.
By Shawn Hubler, May 23, 2020, 5:00 a.m. ET
SACRAMENTO — The University of California’s decision this past week to stop requiring the SAT and ACT tests for admissions renewed a debate that could be a prompt on a college application: Are the tests that were first deployed to diversify the Ivy League beyond rich prep schoolers a worthwhile yardstick, or are they, as one U.S. regent put it, “a proxy for privilege”? …
At the University of California, a faculty task force found that standardized tests were a better predictor of college success than high school grades were. They also found that including the SAT and ACT in the formula for admissions helped some black, Hispanic and low-income students by offering an additional metric for those who might have been rejected based on grades.
As I pointed out in February, the University of California faculty task force found that the r2 of GPA-only forecasting models was 16% but the r2 of SAT-only forecasting models was 21%.
So why the move away from the tests?
Higher education is running out of white kids. They are looking at a hyper stratified future of Asians versus Latinos, so they are engaging in various kinds of Shoot the Messenger behavior.
Critics of the tests cite decades of data indicating that they are inherently biased in favor of affluent, white and Asian-American students. During the debate among the California regents this week, numerous speakers used the word “racist” to describe the exams.
Critics also say the tests are too easily gamed by students who can pay thousands of dollars for private coaching and test prep. Carol Christ, the chancellor of the University of California, Berkeley, has long called for a move away from standardized testing for admissions. She cited the recent college admissions bribery scandal as a case in point, calling the episode “grotesque.”
Obviously, because the Desperate Housewives actress got herself in big legal trouble for paying $15k to have a ringer take the test for her daughter, we must abolish the SAT and ACT, just like Spanish classes nationally abolished holding tests after Ted Kennedy was caught paying a ringer to take his Spanish test for him at Harvard in 1951.
Plaintiffs in a lawsuit pending against the University of California say use of the tests build on existing disparities. According to the College Board, which administers the SAT, 55 percent of Asian-American test takers and 45 percent of white test takers scored a 1200 or higher on the SAT in 2019. For Hispanic and black students, those numbers were 12 percent and 9 percent.
Proponents of a change say it is fairer to judge students by other measures, such as teacher recommendations. Some studies have suggested that high school grades better measure a student’s likelihood of graduation and cumulative performance in college.
The conventional wisdom among the well-informed was long that GPA was a better single measure than SAT, but SAT was a good complement to GPA. But the new U of C faculty task force study found SAT dominated GPA.
And some school officials say the tests are superfluous. California’s community college chancellor, Eloy Ortiz Oakley, who is also a University of California regent, reminded the board this week that the university already enrolls tens of thousands of transfer students who are not required to take any standardized admission tests.
Non-Armenian white people generally don’t know about or think about this huge back door to a UCLA degree. They assume you must go to a 4 year college for 4 years, but lots of Armenians send their kids to decent junior colleges like Pasadena, Glendale or Santa Monica for two years, then off to UCLA for the last two years for the fancy diploma.
What will happen next?
John A. Pérez, chairman of the system’s board of regents, said that college officials in other states had told him privately that they would likely follow suit if California moved to eliminate the test from its admissions requirements.
“I have talked to leaders at other public universities over the last couple of months,” Mr. Pérez said, “and would not be surprised if others looked at this question as well.” …
The end of the SAT and ACT in California’s most prestigious public universities will not necessarily mean the end of admissions testing there. University officials said they were studying the feasibility of developing their own replacement test — with less baggage.
How hard could it be to invent a valid test on which blacks and Hispanics score as well as Asians? Obviously, the reason we don’t have such a test today is because it never ever occurred to anybody until last week to try to invent one.
Everybody claims they want to deepsix the SAT because, they say, the SAT is so racistly biased toward whites and against blacks, but little has changed over the generations in that regard. What has changed over the last two decades is the emergence of Asian Supremacy. That’s a big deal even if nobody talks about it.