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Hundreds of questions on upcoming SAT test have leaked

By Shawn Knight
Aug 3, 2016
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  1. The College Board, the not-for-profit testing company that’s responsible for putting together the SAT college entrance exam used worldwide, set about redesigning the exam in 2012 under the guidance of newly-appointed CEO David Coleman.

    In 2013, consulting firm Gartner urged the company to better protect the sensitive testing material it was developing for the revised SAT. A year later, College Board’s own employees recommended to management that access to the testing material and its answer keys should be limited.

    Apparently, the testing company failed to heed those warnings.

    Reuters said on Wednesday that a person with access to the sensitive testing material provided them with hundreds of confidential test items including 21 reading passages with questions and answers as well as around 160 math problems.

    To say that this is a problem would be a massive understatement.

    The publication said it doesn’t know how widely the leaked test items have been circulated and that there’s no evidence it has fallen into the “wrong hands,” so to speak. After sending a copy of the data to the College Board, spokesperson Sandra Riley told the publication that the organization was moving to contain any damage from the leak.

    The spokesperson didn’t say whether its steps to mitigate the issue would involve delaying or canceling upcoming tests, the next round of which is scheduled to take place on October 1.

    Should the data find its way to a nefarious third-party, they could easily sell the information for top dollar to both students and prep centers looking to gain an unfair advantage.

    Image courtesy Vixit, Shutterstock

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  2. yRaz

    yRaz TS Evangelist Posts: 1,898   +941

    The SAT has been a joke for years and its continued use is a symbol of the failure that is the American education system
     
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2016
    amstech, stewi0001 and psycros like this.
  3. Uncle Al

    Uncle Al TS Evangelist Posts: 1,663   +775

    I recall hearing that at one point the SAT tests were randomized each year from a pool of nearly 500,000 questions and the pool of questions grew each year. If this were the truth (heard if from my grandpa in a bar so it's got to be legit!) it would appear to be a simple matter of regenerating the test ... unless the liquor in that bar was shotty!
     
  4. tonylukac

    tonylukac TS Evangelist Posts: 1,310   +56

    Not much of a problem as a newspaper prints hundreds of thousands of newspapers every morning. Lots of people cheat at school with the internet, but here's something interesting from a more innocent time. When I learned computers, we were on mainframes, big computers that shared the cpu with hundred of students. Mainframes had no default file security. The big deal of files being deleted, etc. by simply typing a delete command on a monitor/terminal no matter which person they belonged to was as new as when we went online with the internet without a firewall, which came later, as people from 10,000 miles away could change/delete your files. Ibm supplied a very expensive file security system called racf, which you rented by the month and cost like $3,000/month. At uic, liberal arts, they were liberal, they decided to change the source code of the os and implement their own file security system. It was much more complex than windows files because each user called the supervisor to do the io, say, having priveledged instructions only the os could do. If it worked like windows, software checking not hardware, someone could write their own copy command, say, and get past security. They would have to gen and test this after midnight when no students were using it. After all this, the jerk in charge of setting the acf rules, as the system was call acf and was later sold by their company as acf2, did not set the rules properly. This is true on many windows installations. So an instructor named dr. smith, like in lost in space, had all his tests and the final online to print them on the printer. Students found out and of course had these tests ahead of time. I didn't look at any of them because I was there to learn. I did get an a in the course, mainframe assembler programming. It was rumored that when they listed who accessed the files, it just showed the userid of the "online" called a terminal monitor program, which was wylbur. I'm not really positive, but I think they never found out what students accessed the files. By the way, mainframe assembler was very important in my career as a system programmer at large installations, because I even so much as impemented my own file security and actually wrote a network at the chicago tribune newspaper.
     
  5. yRaz

    yRaz TS Evangelist Posts: 1,898   +941

    Wut....
     
  6. J spot

    J spot TS Enthusiast Posts: 60   +19

    What years were these?
     
  7. tonylukac

    tonylukac TS Evangelist Posts: 1,310   +56

    This was around 1979.
     
  8. DAOWAce

    DAOWAce TS Booster Posts: 249   +30

    I don't think I ever took a SAT when I was in school.
     
  9. Raoul Duke

    Raoul Duke TS Guru Posts: 930   +354

    The people who know their stuff won't need to buy the answers
    those that do will probably still get them wrong anyway
     

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