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News Release - SAT selected for Colorado’s college entrance exam

Dec. 23, 2015

SAT selected for Colorado's college entrance exam

Department to explore transition options for this year's 11th-grade students

The College Board’s revised SAT and PSAT exams have been recommended by an independent selection committee to serve as the new college entrance and 10th-grade exams for Colorado students. 

The SAT exam will replace the ACT exam provided to all high school juniors since 2001. The SAT and PSAT will be given each spring for the next five years.  Exact dates of the exams are still to be determined. 

“We realize this is a big shift for students and that this decision is coming later in the school year than any of us would like,” said Interim Commissioner of Education Elliott Asp.  “We are committed to exploring options for flexibility that make sense for this year's juniors who need to use this spring’s exam for their college applications.”

Students in grade 10 will take the PSAT instead of the PARCC exams in English language arts and math, which are part of the Colorado Measures of Academic Success assessment system, thanks to a new state law passed in 2015. According to the legislation, the grade 10 exam must be aligned to the Colorado Academic Standards and to the state’s college entrance exam given to all students in 11th grade.  Students in grade 11 will no longer take the PARCC exams.

H.B. 15-1323 required both the new 10th-grade and college entrance exams to be competitively bid. The request for proposals was released in November. Proposals were received by the College Board and ACT.

The selection committee chose the PSAT in part because of its alignment to the high school Colorado Academic Standards, a requirement of the 2015 legislation. In addition, the committee considered the College Board's reporting system more useful to students, as it connects students to resources and activities designed to help identify next steps for extra support or possible acceleration.

The selection committee included diverse group of educators and administrators from urban, rural and suburban districts across the state. Content matter experts, assessment experts, special population professionals, guidance counselors and higher education professionals were represented.

The selection will become official after the conclusion of the procurement process, which includes a waiting period of seven business days. More information on the new assessments will become available in January after the official award and contract negotiations are initiated.

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About the College Board

The College Board is a mission-driven not-for-profit organization that connects students to college success and opportunity. Founded in 1900, the College Board was created to expand access to higher education. Today, the membership association is made up of over 6,000 of the world’s leading educational institutions and is dedicated to promoting excellence and equity in education. Each year, the College Board helps more than seven million students prepare for a successful transition to college through programs and services in college readiness and college success — including the SAT® and the Advanced Placement Program®. The organization also serves the education community through research and advocacy on behalf of students, educators, and schools. For further information, visit