Just months after the College Board unveiled the new SAT this March, a person with access to material for upcoming versions of the redesigned exam provided Reuters with hundreds of confidential test items. The questions and answers include 21 reading passages – each with about a dozen questions – and about 160 math problems.What does the College Board say?
Reuters doesn’t know how widely the items have circulated. The news agency has no evidence that the material has fallen into the hands of what the College Board calls “bad actors” – groups that the organization says “will lie, cheat and steal for personal gain.” But independent testing specialists briefed on the matter said the breach represents one of the most serious security lapses that’s come to light in the history of college-admissions testing.
The materials provided to Reuters contain a wealth of items for upcoming tests: reading passages drawn from novels, historical documents, scientific journals, essays and other texts, each accompanied by questions. Also among the materials were math problems involving geometry and quadratic equations.
The security breach comes as the College Board already faces pressure from U.S. universities to better protect its marquee test.
College Board spokeswoman Sandra Riley said in a statement that the organization was moving to contain any damage from the leak. The College Board is “taking the test forms with stolen content off of the SAT administration schedule while we continue to monitor and analyze the situation,” she said.
Riley declined to say whether those steps would involve cancelling or delaying upcoming tests.
The next sitting of the SAT is October 1.