The class of 2019’s average SAT score declined slightly, but Asian students continued to outperform their classmates, the non-profit College Board, administrator of the test, announced.
The slight decline in average scores is attributed to a greater number of students taking the test on a school day rather than on a weekend. A record 2.2 million students took the college admissions test, up 4.76 percent from 2018’s 2.1 million.
Overall, the combined SAT average of math and language scores dipped to 1059 from 1068 a year ago. The percentage of students scoring high enough to show readiness for first-year college courses fell to 45 percent from 47 percent, the College Board said.
The average combined math and reading score for Asian students was 1223, including 586 verbal and 637 math. White students averaged 1114 on the SAT, including 562 verbal and 553 math. The combined score for Hispanics was 978, including 495 verbal and 483 math. Black students averaged a combined 933, including 476 verbal and 457 math.
Wenyuan Wu, director of administration at the New Jersey-based Asian-American Coalition for Education, said culture explains much of the success of Asian students, but warned that it is unwise to compare results among various racial groups.
“Many cultural factors come into play, such as emphasis on education and community acculturation,” he told China Daily. “This overwrites the hypothesis on socioeconomic factors being the main determinant in academic performance, considering the vast diversity among Asian-Americans and prevalent poverty in many Asian-American communities across the country, including New York City. It shows that one can succeed in school and capitalize on upward mobility.”
Wenyuan said about 31 percent of Presidential Scholars between 2010 and 2014 were Asian, and nearly 50 percent of students winning recent national math, science and technology awards were Asian, despite Asians comprising about 6 percent of the US population.