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[Susan notes: 3 cheers for these colleges that don't rely on SAT scores to create a freshman class.]

Published in New York Times

To the editor

It is a shame that so much energy, anxiety and time are spent on SAT test prep in the already packed day of a high school junior at the expense of real learning.

Whether the old or new version, SAT scores are a better indicator of the real estate value of the student's neighborhood than a predictor of success

in college. The handwritten essay will indicate little except the test-takers' ability to write according to a rote formula or mimic a pre- fabricated essay bestowed to them by their SAT coach.

The encouraging news is that Bates, Bowdoin, Dickinson, Mount Holoyoke and Sarah Lawrence have joined the growing list of colleges that have taken

the bold step of not relying on SAT scores to create a freshman class. In doing so, they have liberated themselves and their applicants from the clutches of the test makers and eliminated the need for some to fatten the wallets of the test-prep agencies and tutors.

Bob Sweeney

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