Students sue University of California for SAT requirement which clearly 'favours' white and wealthier applicants

The plaintiffs claim the test is "discriminatory" because only wealthy white students can afford to pay for expensive private tutors to prepare for it


                            Students sue University of California for SAT requirement which clearly 'favours' white and wealthier applicants
Students at UC Berkeley carry signs as they march through campus during a national day of action against funding cuts and tuition increases in Berkeley, California. (Getty Images)

The University of California has two pending lawsuits claiming that their SAT admission requirement is "discriminatory." Students in California have brought a lawsuit against the university over its decision to uphold SAT marks as an admission requirement, according to a report by Campus Reform.

The plaintiffs claim the test is "discriminatory" because only wealthy white students can afford to pay for expensive private tutors to prepare for it, per the report.

SAT test preparation books sit on a shelf at a Barnes and Noble store on June 27, 2002, in New York City. College Board trustees decided June 27 to add a written essay and other changes to the SAT in an overhaul of the college entrance exam. (Getty Images)

The students argue in one of the two pending lawsuits against the university that SAT and ACT exams are discriminatory against underprivileged candidates. 

...the UC has failed to carry out its promise: rather than fulfilling its vision as “[a]n engine of opportunity for all Californians”2 and creating a level playing field in which all students are evaluated based on individual merit, the UC requires all applicants to subject themselves to SAT and ACT tests that are demonstrably discriminatory against the State’s least privileged students, the very students who would most benefit from higher education."

Furthermore, the lawsuit took a page from the book of some California leaders, including Gov. Gavin Newsom (D), who asserted that the SAT exam unfairly favors white students.

The discriminatory effect of the use of these tests is well known to both the State and the UC. Governor and ex officio Regent Gavin Newsom recently recognized that “use [of the SAT and ACT] exacerbates the inequities for underrepresented students, given that performance on these tests is highly correlated with race and parental income, and is not the best predictor for college success.” UC Berkeley Chancellor Carol Christ similarly called for the UC to drop its test score requirement because SAT and ACT scores “really contribute to the inequities of our system.

In November, several law firms in California had threatened to sue the University of California after it decided to uphold the SAT as an admission requirement, per Breitbart News.

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