A biology class at Central High School predicted that a local population of animals will double in size every 12 years. The population at the beginning of 2014 was estimated to be 50 animals. If P represents the population n years after 2014, then which of the following equations represents the class’s model of the population over time?
This is a sample problem released by the College Board for the new SAT. The answer is D.
It kind of differs from “The following points (6,10) and (3,K) lie on a line with slope of 4.” Big changes are in store for the new SAT.
1. The Top score is now 1600 based on the Math and Verbal sections.
2. The essay is now optional and one is given 50 minutes to complete it. Also, it is offered at the end of the test. On the old SAT it was always at the beginning of the test and one was allotted 25 minutes.
3. There is no penalty for wrong answers.
4. Advanced Math topics are required knowledge including Trigonometry and Pre-calculus.
5. There are no hard, obscure vocabulary words to learn.
6. Part of the math sections are NON-calculator.
One will be given 37 questions with a time allotment of 55 minutes where calculator use will be allowed, and an additional 20 questions with a time allotment of 25 minutes where calculators will not be allowed.
7. There will be charts and graphs and data analysis proficiency required. This is like what is currently on the “science” section of the ACT.
Sample Problem #2
A company’s manager estimated that the cost, C, in dollars, of producing N items is C=7N+350. The company sells each item for $12. The company makes a profit when total income from selling a quantity of items is greater than the total cost of producing that quantity of items. Which of the following inequalities gives all possible values of N for which the manager estimates that the company will make a profit?
The Answer is C
The new SAT will allow more time per question on all sections as compared to the old SAT. The questions are more complex and challenging and will focus on conceptual understanding with less emphasis on geometric skills.
Trigonometry, radians, and congruence theorems will be required knowledge. The questions are designed so that it is harder to work backwards from the answer choices given. For those students dependent on technology for their math work, the 20-question no-calculator section may prove to be difficult.
Here are two additional sample problems. The answers will be at the end of the article, so you can try them first. All four problems were chosen out of a random sampling the College Board offered. I do not know how one can train or tutor for the conceptual understanding this new test will require. By the way, all four sample problems here were labeled easy or medium level difficulty.
Sample Problem #3
A research assistant randomly selected 75 undergraduate students from the list of students enrolled in the psychology-degree program at a large university. She asked each of the 75 students. “How many minutes per day do you typically spend reading?” The mean reading time in the sample was 89 minutes, and the margin of error for this estimate was 4.28 minutes. Another research assistant intends to replicate the survey and will attempt to get a smaller margin of error. Which of the following examples will most likely result in a smaller margin of error for the estimated mean time students in the psychology-degree program read per day?
A. 40 randomly selected undergraduate psychology-degree program students.
B. 40 randomly selected undergraduate students from all degree programs at the college.
C. 300 randomly selected undergraduate psychology-degree program students.
D. 300 randomly selected undergraduate students from all degree programs at the college.
No wonder they’ll allow more time per question. The question itself without the answer choices is over 100 words.
James Murphy, writing in the January 20 issue of the Atlantic brought up this question as well. He points out that answering this question depends on a fairly basic knowledge of statistics. He referenced a long-time tutor who taught statistics in college who challenged the College Board “easy” ranking of this question, dubbing it “intermediate” instead.
Sample Question #4
A typical image taken on the surface of Mars by a camera is 11.2 gigabits in size. A tracking station on Earth can receive data from the spacecraft at a data rate of 3 megabits per second for a maximum of 11 hours each day. If 1 gigabit equals 1.024 megabits, what is the maximum number of typical images that the tracking station could receive from the camera each day?
D. 144 Answers 3. C 4. B
Howard Goldberg is the owner of Gold’s Math and SAT Tutoring service and has helped thousands of children to excel on the SAT. He can be reached at [email protected]
By Howard Goldberg