GOLETA, Calif. - Students at San Marcos High School in Goleta are preparing to the take the SAT. The outcome could mean the difference between getting into the school of their chose or a school that doesn't rely as heavily on the score.
The test used to be known as the Scholastic Aptitude Test and The Scholastic Assessment Test. And it's just called the SAT and it is one of the standardized tests used for college admissions.
The test has been criticized by educators who believe it gives wealthier students an advantage because they are more likely to pay for preparation courses. Critics also believed minorities didn't do as well on some multiple choice analogy questions and essays.
The president of the college board said a new test will be created by 2016.
It will no longer have vocabulary words few people use, incorrect answers won't detract from scores and essays will be optional.
Administrators will also be teaming up with the online Kahn Academy to make preparation free over the Internet.
Some San Marcos students said it will help students succeed. Teachers said it was not the first time the test has had a makeover to make college more accessible.
At least one parent is concerned the changes will "dumb it down."
But overall they like the idea of free online preparation.
Students taking the test this year and next still need to prepare for the old one.
But younger students can prepare for the changes ahead.