Important Updates and Announcements
- College Board Search: We are expanding our virtual engagement with students to help connect them to colleges and college opportunity, even if they’re not able to test this year. Over 300,000 students nationwide have opted-in to Search on our website. These are students new to Search and are available starting October 5, 2020. MORE
- SAT: Many schools and test centers will have reduced capacity because of social distancing guidelines, and they may encounter unexpected closures. We are asking test centers to report closures to College Board as soon as possible. MORE
- National Recognition Programs: We expanded our National Recognition Programs on September 7. Institutions can connect with students who have received awards as part of our African American Recognition Program, Indigenous Recognition Program, and Rural and Small Town Recognition Program, in addition to those students who’ve been granted honors through our existing Hispanic Recognition Program. MORE
- AP: The 2021 exams will cover the full content in each course, To help educators and students we are offering new, free, flexible online resources to support instruction year round. MORE
What You Need to Know About AP
- In 2020, all AP Exams were delivered digitally, and 4.6 million AP exams were started over ten days of testing, across 32 subjects. The AP Exam was developed in close consultation with higher ed faculty, and students with a passing score on an AP Exam will have the skills necessary to succeed in subsequent coursework in the discipline.
- As usual, our network of college faculty and AP readers will score the AP exams and have been reported on a 1–5 scale.
- We recommend institutions honor the same AP credit and placement policies they already have in place and publish this commitment on their COVID-related website.
- The 2021 exams will cover the full content in each course. To help educators and students in hybrid/blended, in-person, online, or online learning environments, we are offering new, free, flexible online resources to support instruction year round. This includes AP Daily, a series of on-demand, short videos AP teachers can assign to students, saving instruction and class time for focused discussion and collaboration.
- We offered optional free, live AP review courses, delivered by AP teachers from across the country. These mobile-friendly classes were designed to be used alongside work schools assigned. The courses have been viewed more than 33 million times by 5.2 million unique viewers.
What You Need to Know About SAT
- Local schools and test centers make individual decisions about whether to administer the SAT. They must adhere to local public health guidelines and follow the College Board’s requirements:
- All students and staff must wear a mask or protective face covering during the SAT administration.
- Students must be seated at least six feet apart during testing.
- Students and staff must confirm they don’t have symptoms and they haven’t violated travel restrictions prior to entering the testing room.
- Many schools and test centers will have reduced capacity because of social distancing guidelines, and they may encounter unexpected closures. We are asking test centers to report closures to College Board as soon as possible.
- A full list of reported closures is posted on the College Board Test Center Closure page, which is updated continuously. The College Board is encouraging students to opt in to receive text message and check their email regularly for messages from the College Board.
- We are offering flexibility with administration dates for SAT School day and PSAT-related assessments and we have adapted policies and procedures to provide opportunities for students who wish to test. We have added a PSAT/NMSQT administration in January for schools that can’t administer the test in October.
- We have created a toolkit to support conversations with students and parents on SAT fee waivers.
What You Need to Know About College Board Search
We are adapting to continue connecting students and college opportunity:
- In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the College Board is expanding our virtual engagement with students to help connect them to colleges and college opportunity, even if they’re not able to test this year due to covid-19 cancellations. Over 300,000 students nationwide have indicated they want to hear from colleges as they start their college planning journey by opting-into Search on our website. These are students who are new to Student Search Service and all that it offers. You will be able to connect with these students in Search starting October 5, 2020.
- These new participants add to the strength of the existing Search pool. Currently we have over 3 million juniors and seniors available for your institution to contact thanks to the number of students who took the PSAT/NMSQT in 2019. Since August, 419,832 students have taken the SAT, opted-in, and had their scores added to Search.
- We’re releasing data from the fall sittings of the PSAT/NMSQT data into Student Search Service earlier this year, on December 7, 2020 as we want to give institutions flexibility in when and how they outreach to students.
- We expanded our National Recognition Programs on September 7. Institutions can now connect with students who have received awards as part of our African American Recognition Program, Indigenous Recognition Program, and Rural and Small Town Recognition Program, in addition to those students who’ve been granted honors through our existing Hispanic Recognition Program.
What You Need to Know About Financial Aid
- We have released a new Financial Aid guide focused on student/family communications and financial aid appeals.
- Our financial aid services are operational and ready to serve institutions and students.
- Covid-19 resources for aid professionals, including professional judgment tip sheets and PowerFAIDS covid-19 operational supports, are available online.
- We have developed suites of resources for CSS Profile and PowerFAIDS users.
- We will continue to engage financial aid professionals to gather input on how we can be most helpful during this challenging time.
- We are monitoring legislation and guidance from the Department of Education closely to ensure all systems, including PowerFAIDS, respond and deliver related updates in a timely fashion.
Key Resources for Higher Education
Engaging Campus Stakeholders on Enrollment Issues Associated with Student Diversity: A Communications Primer
With the goal of supporting enrollment and campus leaders as they engage with colleagues and their communities on issues associated with student diversity and admissions, this guide will offer insights and guidance on how best to successfully navigate the current landscape, with a focus on key concepts, model definitions, and effective rebuttals to myths on issues associated with diversity that continue to plague our national and institutional dialogues.
Financial Aid Covid-19 Focus Group Highlights
The College Board gathered financial aid professionals from 26 institutions to better understand the unique aid delivery challenges institutions are facing during the Covid-19 pandemic. Coming out of those discussions, this short guide focuses on student and family communications and financial aid appeals. Drawing from the rich conversation, the guide gives shares key themes, recommendations and resources for aid professionals at all levels.
Higher Ed Data Privacy
Enhancing data privacy for students is crucial. Achieving this objective, while also preserving students’ access to necessary college-planning information, has become increasingly challenging for policymakers and more critical in the time of covid-19. With the public policy environment rapidly evolving, it’s important for higher education officials to have a clear understanding of what’s at stake. This paper provides information on various considerations related to data privacy for higher education institutions.
Template Material for Communicating AP Credit and Placement Policies
Template materials to help make your institution’s credit options transparent to prospective incoming students and their families.
Communicating Test-Flexible Admissions Policies to Prospective Applicants
How Our Members Are Communicating to Students in Light of the Coronavirus
Early Considerations and Guidance for Enrollment Leaders
Admissions-Flexible in the Time of Coronavirus: Guidance on Communicating and Planning for Effective Decision Making in a New and Altered Environment
Communicating Reassurance to Prospective Applicants in Light of COVID-19
Examples of how College Board members are communicating to students and families
AP 2020 Exam Updates
Frequently asked questions from higher education on changes to the AP program including the format of the digital assessment, validity, and test security.
Tip Sheet: COVID-19 Resources for Financial Aid Professionals
Information on using professional judgement for financial aid professionals reviewing aid applications from families affected by the coronavirus epidemic.