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(Deadspin)   So, what happens when a 35-year-old man retakes the SAT? Please answer using a No. 2 pencil   (deadspin.com) divider line 65
    More: Amusing, SAT scores, Kaplan, private tutors, multiple choice question, College Board, scantron, penal labour  
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5772 clicks; posted to Geek » on 06 Mar 2014 at 8:34 AM (24 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-03-06 08:37:08 AM
I haven't had a number 2 pencil in 20 years, what do I do?
 
2014-03-06 08:40:00 AM
Christ, what an arsehole!
 
2014-03-06 08:40:09 AM
He acts like a pussy?  'Cause that's what I got from that article.
 
2014-03-06 08:41:49 AM
Way too long. And the passive aggressive commentating called and wants Denis Leary back
 
2014-03-06 08:42:58 AM

So, what happens when a 35-year-old man retakes the SAT?


He tries far too hard to write a funny article about the experience and ends up sounding like a jackass?
 
2014-03-06 08:43:17 AM
I got about two paragraphs in and bailed.
Does he get any less douchier?
 
2014-03-06 08:45:50 AM

give me doughnuts: I got about two paragraphs in and bailed.
Does he get any less douchier?


No.  In fact, he pretty much pegs the douche-ometer.
 
2014-03-06 08:47:15 AM
The SAT essay section is a plague upon this country. To score high, you have to write as complex a sentence as possible. So an entire generation is being taught to write in these three or four part runon sentences and paragraphs over half a page long. It drove me nuts having to grade that horrible stuff in grad school.

I tried to warn them that no one outside of an SAT grader wanted to read something wrotten like that. I was going against what had been ingrained in them over 4 years of high school so of course they didn't listen.
 
2014-03-06 08:49:47 AM

Copperbelly watersnake: The SAT essay section is a plague upon this country. To score high, you have to write as complex a sentence as possible. So an entire generation is being taught to write in these three or four part runon sentences and paragraphs over half a page long. It drove me nuts having to grade that horrible stuff in grad school.

I tried to warn them that no one outside of an SAT grader wanted to read something wrotten like that. I was going against what had been ingrained in them over 4 years of high school so of course they didn't listen.


Irony.
 
2014-03-06 08:52:24 AM

Copperbelly watersnake


I tried to warn them that no one outside of an SAT grader wanted to read something wrotten like that.


Freudian slip is Freudian.
 
2014-03-06 08:54:03 AM
Not that it matters, but this article is like two years old.
 
2014-03-06 08:57:26 AM
What is the deal with SATs? Right?

BTW, I heard on the radio this morning that the SAT test is being overhauled. The essay is "optional". I am not sure what that means on a test used to determine admission to college. If you don't try for every point you can get, you should fail.
 
2014-03-06 09:02:48 AM
When I wrote my first technical paper in grad school my professor gave it back to me with the first five pages completely crossed out... Relearning how to write sucked. Concise, not full of stupid bullshiat! Stupid high school and college English classes.
 
2014-03-06 09:11:55 AM
So much whining, so much math failure, and he ended up doing better on the retake.  What a useless article.
 
2014-03-06 09:13:13 AM

Veritas333: When I wrote my first technical paper in grad school my professor gave it back to me with the first five pages completely crossed out... Relearning how to write sucked. Concise, not full of stupid bullshiat! Stupid high school and college English classes.


My largest mind-screw in college relating to academic work was taking a chemistry course and some required literature course simultaneously.  There was a project in chemistry where you had to write your own paper step-by-step each week (abstract-intro-methods, etc. one each week).  CONCISE CONCISE CONCISE.  CUT THE BS.

Then I went to my english course, which is obviously the opposite.  Analyze what you think it means, whats implied. etc. etc.  It was like having to learn and unlearn how to write every day for a bloody semester.

The worst was after 4 years of hard sciences I had one last gen req so I took Film to satisfy another gen req.  It had the reputation of being absurdly easy.  I BARELY scraped by with a B because I could not get my papers long enough and forcing myself to think figuratively again after so much direct action was a biatch.
 
2014-03-06 09:13:36 AM
Didn't NewsRadio cover this?

/That and an addiction to Defender.
 
2014-03-06 09:17:31 AM
That essay was bad and the writer should feel bad.

Plus, his grasp of math is clearly pathetic.
 
2014-03-06 09:18:51 AM

GameSprocket: What is the deal with SATs? Right?

BTW, I heard on the radio this morning that the SAT test is being overhauled. The essay is "optional". I am not sure what that means on a test used to determine admission to college. If you don't try for every point you can get, you should fail.


I get what you're saying, but you seem to be misinformed on the construction of the test currently vs. what it will be after the overhaul.

Currently, you lose points for questions you get wrong, so you definitely shouldn't try for every point you can get - if you have no clue on the question, you're hurting yourself by guessing.  There's a formula to whether to guess or not, based on elimination and question type.  But in general no, you shouldn't go for every point.   You'll do terribly.

And under the new overhaul, the "optional" essay will likely be an ungraded writing sample.  So if you suck at writing, why would you push for an ungraded sample that just makes you look terrible if someone happens to look at it?  Better to not do it at all, and leave it unknown.  If there's no real point system for it, most schools only care about the numbered scores.  Now, if you're aiming high, and the Ivy League school will be reading the sample, you need to write it.
 
2014-03-06 09:22:08 AM
I'm old enough that my kids have taken the SAT but I still do a practice question each morning.

http://sat.collegeboard.org/practice/sat-question-of-the-day

It is a bit disheartening to see the low percentage of correct answers on some of the questions.
 
2014-03-06 09:24:02 AM

Khellendros: GameSprocket: What is the deal with SATs? Right?

BTW, I heard on the radio this morning that the SAT test is being overhauled. The essay is "optional". I am not sure what that means on a test used to determine admission to college. If you don't try for every point you can get, you should fail.

I get what you're saying, but you seem to be misinformed on the construction of the test currently vs. what it will be after the overhaul.

Currently, you lose points for questions you get wrong, so you definitely shouldn't try for every point you can get - if you have no clue on the question, you're hurting yourself by guessing.  There's a formula to whether to guess or not, based on elimination and question type.  But in general no, you shouldn't go for every point.   You'll do terribly.

And under the new overhaul, the "optional" essay will likely be an ungraded writing sample.  So if you suck at writing, why would you push for an ungraded sample that just makes you look terrible if someone happens to look at it?  Better to not do it at all, and leave it unknown.  If there's no real point system for it, most schools only care about the numbered scores.  Now, if you're aiming high, and the Ivy League school will be reading the sample, you need to write it.


So can you use it for your college admission essay as that's pretty much what it is now?
 
2014-03-06 09:27:33 AM
This reminds me, I'm tired of paying for your snowflakes schooling. We ought to require them to pay for it themselves by forcing mandatory K-12 schooling and then having them take a test to determine their competency. If they don't pass 12th grade level on the test then we assess them 20 thousand dollars for every grade and subject they fail. On the flip side if they achieve college level advanced placement scores we reward them with 20 thousand dollars in every subject.

For example if Jethro Dipshiat only scores a 6th grade competency in Math, Reading, and fails everything else well he is looking at starting his adult life at least 240,000 dollars in debt. If Jenny Knowsitall scores a level 3 AP competency in say Calculus then we reward her with 60K.
 
2014-03-06 09:30:04 AM

albatros183: I haven't had a number 2 pencil in 20 years, what do I do?


Isn't a number 2 pencil what you'd use in the "Brown University" thread?
 
2014-03-06 09:36:21 AM
He gets to sit around a bunch of hot 17 years olds?
 
2014-03-06 09:37:00 AM

MindStalker: So can you use it for your college admission essay as that's pretty much what it is now?


Not really.  An admission essay will be a very different topic set than an SAT essay.  And SAT essays are currently scored and used in the composite.  They won't be after the next set of changes. It'll be a writing sample, much like the LSAT - sent to schools with your scores if they request it, but most lower and mid-level schools will only care about the scored sections.  Easier to evaluate and rank.
 
2014-03-06 09:41:16 AM

Slaves2Darkness: This reminds me, I'm tired of paying for your snowflakes schooling. We ought to require them to pay for it themselves by forcing mandatory K-12 schooling and then having them take a test to determine their competency. If they don't pass 12th grade level on the test then we assess them 20 thousand dollars for every grade and subject they fail. On the flip side if they achieve college level advanced placement scores we reward them with 20 thousand dollars in every subject.

For example if Jethro Dipshiat only scores a 6th grade competency in Math, Reading, and fails everything else well he is looking at starting his adult life at least 240,000 dollars in debt. If Jenny Knowsitall scores a level 3 AP competency in say Calculus then we reward her with 60K.


Wow.  What an awful system.  So, since raw intelligence is a genetic lottery, and potential is typically only reached by those with money, means, and proper nurturing/schooling, you want to take the poorest and most unintelligent and make life even harder for them before they even start their adult life?

Congrats.  You've created a system where rich kids and those with smart parents are the only ones that can be successful in this world.  Most everyone else is put into crushing debt at age 17.
 
2014-03-06 09:42:50 AM
Too Long Skipped to Last Paragraph


Too much BS. Most of us know what a crappy event the SAT is. Bottom line: he did 190 points better as an adult. FWIW
 
2014-03-06 09:44:47 AM
The questions aren't particularly that hard, most people suffer from a lack of practice. I think it would probably help a lot of people to go home and practice a few simple things every day, particularly with keeping mathematics fresh.

I never sat through the SATs, but went through the UK equivalent. then on to university. Of course that didn't stop the US demanding I either spent $500-800 having all my transcripts transferred to the US, or performing a GED for $20 when I went back to college in my 30s. Took up two evenings and then they got crossed I wouldn't want across a stage to pick up a diploma, even when I said I have my real end of year finals coming up and need to do some proper work. That and I felt sad for the people who put in lots of effort and then some arsehole Brit comes in and gets a perfect score while he is still half a sleep.

Thankfully that is all over now.
 
2014-03-06 09:45:11 AM
"I'm smarter than I was when I was 17, and that's a relief, because I was a farking MORON at 17. "

Final result of the massively long article is that he is smarter than a farking moron. I guess he deserves a round of applause?
 
2014-03-06 09:50:10 AM

Khellendros: Slaves2Darkness: This reminds me, I'm tired of paying for your snowflakes schooling. We ought to require them to pay for it themselves by forcing mandatory K-12 schooling and then having them take a test to determine their competency. If they don't pass 12th grade level on the test then we assess them 20 thousand dollars for every grade and subject they fail. On the flip side if they achieve college level advanced placement scores we reward them with 20 thousand dollars in every subject.

For example if Jethro Dipshiat only scores a 6th grade competency in Math, Reading, and fails everything else well he is looking at starting his adult life at least 240,000 dollars in debt. If Jenny Knowsitall scores a level 3 AP competency in say Calculus then we reward her with 60K.

Wow.  What an awful system.  So, since raw intelligence is a genetic lottery, and potential is typically only reached by those with money, means, and proper nurturing/schooling, you want to take the poorest and most unintelligent and make life even harder for them before they even start their adult life?

Congrats.  You've created a system where rich kids and those with smart parents are the only ones that can be successful in this world.  Most everyone else is put into crushing debt at age 17.


Don't be rude. Just thank the Congressman for his suggestion.
 
2014-03-06 09:50:16 AM

wiski: "I'm smarter than I was when I was 17, and that's a relief, because I was a farking MORON at 17. "

Final result of the massively long article is that he is smarter than a farking moron. I guess he deserves a round of applause?


No, he's still a farking moron, just that in his estimation, he's less of one today.  That point is somewhat debatable.
 
2014-03-06 09:50:45 AM
Never took the SAT.  I live in ACT flyover country.  I remember scoring an avg score of 23.... I do not remember if that is good or avg but I do remember my sister being mad at me for scoring better than her by a point.  That and my writing/english score was 17.  Me no english so good.
 
2014-03-06 09:55:12 AM
That article read like it was written by a guy who doesn't have the slightest idea how lousy his writing is.

"Wince", indeed.
 
2014-03-06 09:56:11 AM
It's a nonagon, btw
 
2014-03-06 10:01:25 AM

Khellendros: Slaves2Darkness: This reminds me, I'm tired of paying for your snowflakes schooling. We ought to require them to pay for it themselves by forcing mandatory K-12 schooling and then having them take a test to determine their competency. If they don't pass 12th grade level on the test then we assess them 20 thousand dollars for every grade and subject they fail. On the flip side if they achieve college level advanced placement scores we reward them with 20 thousand dollars in every subject.

For example if Jethro Dipshiat only scores a 6th grade competency in Math, Reading, and fails everything else well he is looking at starting his adult life at least 240,000 dollars in debt. If Jenny Knowsitall scores a level 3 AP competency in say Calculus then we reward her with 60K.

Wow.  What an awful system.  So, since raw intelligence is a genetic lottery, and potential is typically only reached by those with money, means, and proper nurturing/schooling, you want to take the poorest and most unintelligent and make life even harder for them before they even start their adult life?

Congrats.  You've created a system where rich kids and those with smart parents are the only ones that can be successful in this world.  Most everyone else is put into crushing debt at age 17.


And yet we're comfortable with our current model where this happens at 21 or 22 instead.
 
2014-03-06 10:04:02 AM

Wellon Dowd: Khellendros: Slaves2Darkness: ......

Don't be rude. Just thank the Congressman for his suggestion.



I'm pretty sure its just trollbait. Honestly it falls into a bit of Poe's Law. The only way to know for sure is to delve into Slaves2Darkness comment history, and honestly, I'd rather stay ignorant.
 
2014-03-06 10:18:26 AM
When I was teaching Algebra II and Geometry, you would not believe the grief I'd get from some parents.  I SOOO wanted to throw a few problems at them to see how they'd do.  I suspect the vast majority would have failed, just like their kids.

Kinda hard to get parents involved when they suck at math as much as their kids!  And these people have to make decisions about retirement funds, mortgages, etc.!  No wonder people don't have the money to retire!!
 
2014-03-06 10:40:27 AM

Khellendros: Slaves2Darkness: This reminds me, I'm tired of paying for your snowflakes schooling. We ought to require them to pay for it themselves by forcing mandatory K-12 schooling and then having them take a test to determine their competency. If they don't pass 12th grade level on the test then we assess them 20 thousand dollars for every grade and subject they fail. On the flip side if they achieve college level advanced placement scores we reward them with 20 thousand dollars in every subject.

For example if Jethro Dipshiat only scores a 6th grade competency in Math, Reading, and fails everything else well he is looking at starting his adult life at least 240,000 dollars in debt. If Jenny Knowsitall scores a level 3 AP competency in say Calculus then we reward her with 60K.

Wow.  What an awful system.  So, since raw intelligence is a genetic lottery, and potential is typically only reached by those with money, means, and proper nurturing/schooling, you want to take the poorest and most unintelligent and make life even harder for them before they even start their adult life?

Congrats.  You've created a system where rich kids and those with smart parents are the only ones that can be successful in this world.  Most everyone else is put into crushing debt at age 17.


What kind of idiot can't pass the 12th grade? Call it an incentive to at least come up to the very minimal standards we expect of every adult in this society. We are so worried about children being left behind, well give those little bastards an incentive to work hard.
 
2014-03-06 10:42:31 AM

indy_kid: When I was teaching Algebra II and Geometry, you would not believe the grief I'd get from some parents.  I SOOO wanted to throw a few problems at them to see how they'd do.  I suspect the vast majority would have failed, just like their kids.

Kinda hard to get parents involved when they suck at math as much as their kids!  And these people have to make decisions about retirement funds, mortgages, etc.!  No wonder people don't have the money to retire!!


Umm...yeah, unless you deal with Algebra and/or Geometry every day you just forget it. Let's face it for most people Algebra and Geometry were just crap they had to get through in High School and have no bearing on their lifes afterward.
 
2014-03-06 10:42:33 AM
Now, I may be a dumb country hyperchicken, but it looks like I'm not alone.
 
2014-03-06 10:43:24 AM

MindStalker: Wellon Dowd: Khellendros: Slaves2Darkness: ......

Don't be rude. Just thank the Congressman for his suggestion.


I'm pretty sure its just trollbait. Honestly it falls into a bit of Poe's Law. The only way to know for sure is to delve into Slaves2Darkness comment history, and honestly, I'd rather stay ignorant.


Probably for the best, but this is not the first time I have expounded upon this idea.
 
2014-03-06 10:43:58 AM

Slaves2Darkness: What kind of idiot can't pass the 12th grade? Call it an incentive to at least come up to the very minimal standards we expect of every adult in this society. We are so worried about children being left behind, well give those little bastards an incentive to work hard.


I suppose there are no learning disabilities on your planet.   Not to blame all scholastic failures on them, there are plenty of issues regarding culture, socialization, additional pressures, parental support, etc.  But plenty of kids try hard, have good support, and still have trouble in school.

/Poe's law at work?
 
2014-03-06 10:56:18 AM

limeyfellow: I never sat through the SATs, but went through the UK equivalent. then on to university. Of course that didn't stop the US demanding I either spent $500-800 having all my transcripts transferred to the US, or performing a GED for $20 when I went back to college in my 30s. Took up two evenings and then they got crossed I wouldn't want across a stage to pick up a diploma, even when I said I have my real end of year finals coming up and need to do some proper work. That and I felt sad for the people who put in lots of effort and then some arsehole Brit comes in and gets a perfect score while he is still half a sleep.


Yeah, I didn't do bad at all on my GED.  I think I only missed 2 or 3 out of the math section, mostly because the proctor was an asshole and wouldn't let us use calculators  or scratch paper.  Fortunately, they didn't invalidate my scores because I just decided, "fark it, I'll write on the motherfarking table".

Probably would have done better in high school and not have failed the classes I aced on the GED if it weren't for weird social issues, but I really didn't feel like sticking around for a fifth year just to pass some stupid social studies course.  That was a fun vicious circle:  Having met my classmates since then, seems like being a furry, a die-hard Boy Scout, and on the Ultimate team worked to my advantage.  I was the cool kid everyone liked but few knew how to hang with.  Teenage logic for them: How do you hang with someone who doesn't give a shiat about trends and just does his own thing?  Teenage logic for me:  Everyone knows my name and nobody seems to abjectly hate me, so how do I not have an entourage of half the damn campus following me around?

/Did better in college
 
2014-03-06 11:41:35 AM

Slaves2Darkness: indy_kid: When I was teaching Algebra II and Geometry, you would not believe the grief I'd get from some parents.  I SOOO wanted to throw a few problems at them to see how they'd do.  I suspect the vast majority would have failed, just like their kids.

Kinda hard to get parents involved when they suck at math as much as their kids!  And these people have to make decisions about retirement funds, mortgages, etc.!  No wonder people don't have the money to retire!!

Umm...yeah, unless you deal with Algebra and/or Geometry every day you just forget it. Let's face it for most people Algebra and Geometry were just crap they had to get through in High School and have no bearing on their lifes afterward.


Ummm, you do know that much of what you do *IS* algebra, right?

I can almost see the argument for Geometry (though proofs are a great way to teach logical thought, something *SORELY* lacking in most people), but almost every kind of decision you might make regarding your finances is basic algebra.

You may not *THINK* of it that way, but it is.
 
2014-03-06 11:51:42 AM
Christ, he sucks at math.  Their nomenclature of expressions implicitly equaling zero was a bit odd, but g(x) - f(x) -1, and 7, you dumbass.
 
2014-03-06 11:58:00 AM
That guy sucks at math. He REALLY sucks at it. I'd be embarassed to be an adult and not know simple arithmetic like how to divide fractions.
 
2014-03-06 12:02:19 PM

Slaves2Darkness: indy_kid: When I was teaching Algebra II and Geometry, you would not believe the grief I'd get from some parents.  I SOOO wanted to throw a few problems at them to see how they'd do.  I suspect the vast majority would have failed, just like their kids.

Kinda hard to get parents involved when they suck at math as much as their kids!  And these people have to make decisions about retirement funds, mortgages, etc.!  No wonder people don't have the money to retire!!

Umm...yeah, unless you deal with Algebra and/or Geometry every day you just forget it. Let's face it for most people Algebra and Geometry were just crap they had to get through in High School and have no bearing on their lifes afterward.


Until they go to do something simple like buy tile for their bathroom and they have no idea how to calculate how much they need.
 
2014-03-06 12:02:31 PM

Russ1642: That guy sucks at math. He REALLY sucks at it. I'd be embarassed to be an adult and not know simple arithmetic like how to divide fractions.


This is not uncommon among college educated adults.
 
2014-03-06 01:12:10 PM

Russ1642: That guy sucks at math. He REALLY sucks at it. I'd be embarassed to be an adult and not know simple arithmetic like how to divide fractions.


The drop out rate for apprentice plumbers, because they can't handle fractions, is about 60%.  But math is useless and never used after school. Well Duh! If you don't have the math mastered, you can't get a good paying job that uses it and end up as a stock clerk or fast food worker or blog writer - people who don't need it. I find it funny that he says "That shiat is useless."and a 2 sentences later "I took my final score on this practice test and did a proportion (one more goddamn math problem) to see if my score was better than it was 19 years ago."So math is useless, so it is OK to be resentful when you have to use it to find something out.
 
2014-03-06 01:47:34 PM

ikanreed: Christ, he sucks at math.  Their nomenclature of expressions implicitly equaling zero was a bit odd, but g(x) - f(x) -1, and 7, you dumbass.


It's tough to see because of the thumbnail-sized images, but it's g(x) = whatever, so the correct answer is g(x) = f(x) + 1 (the actual minus signs are 1 pixel high, and the equals signs are two pixels high).

The polygon works like this:

You're given a quadrilateral-shaped section of a regular n-sided polygon.  The sum of two angles, x and y, is given as 80°, and the other two angles are not, but because they're part of the the polygon and the polygon is regular, you know they're equal. The quadrilateral has interior angles that add up to 360°, so the sum of the two other angles is 360° − 80° = 280°, meaning that each angle of the polygon is 140° (since they're equal). From there you can get the exterior angles of the polygon by 180° − 140° = 40°. The exterior angles of any polygon add up to 360°, so divide 360° by 40° to get the number of sides, 9.
 
2014-03-06 03:25:00 PM

Slaves2Darkness: What kind of idiot can't pass the 12th grade? Call it an incentive to at least come up to the very minimal standards we expect of every adult in this society. We are so worried about children being left behind, well give those little bastards an incentive to work hard.


So you move the goalposts, and make a second, equally ridiculous assertion that still exacerbates the problem and compounds the weight already put on the half of the population on the left side of the curve.  Not only will these folks never get into college, and will often be stuck with hard labor and low-paying jobs for their entire adult life, but we feel you need to have an additional burden arbitrarily added.  Good job.

Any other gems you want to vomit up and share with the thread?  Maybe something involving grinding the poor into dog food for over-bred Pomeranians given to rich kids, or maybe enforcing mandatory slave labor on those who don't pass an IQ test until the get smarter?  Come on, there's got to be something better in there!
 
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