2012-2013 SAT, AP Participation Rates Increase

- REPRINT from TEA News Release

New data released on Sept. 26 by the College Board shows that 2012-2013 student participation rates for the SAT and Advanced Placement (AP) exams for Texas public school students increased over the previous school year.

The increases mark the fourth consecutive year the SAT and AP participation numbers in Texas have grown.The 156,877 Texas public school students who took the SAT in 2012-2013 reflects an increase of 0.2 percent from 2011-2012. The SAT takers in the Texas Class of 2013 represent 56 percent of the state’s public high school graduates.

Of the total SAT examinees, 62 percent identified themselves as minority students with greater participation from the previous year among Hispanic and Asian students than other racial/ethnic groups. For the first time in state history, more Hispanic students (59,294) than White students (58,307) took the SAT in Texas public schools.

The 204,795 Texas public school students who took AP exams in 2012-2013 represent an increase of 5.4 percent from 2011-2012 and a 37.6 percent jump over the past five school years. Students took 373,447 AP exams in 2012-2013, an increase of 6.5 percent over the previous school year and 38.6 percent over the past five years.

“More Texas students are taking the SAT and AP exams because they have career aspirations that require education beyond high school,” said Commissioner of Education Michael Williams. “As a state, our job should be to provide every student a solid foundation to assure they not only begin that dream, but can make it across the finish line at the post-secondary level.”

College Board data also shows that while participation in Texas has increased, SAT mean scores have remained relatively stable since 2010. Texas public school students in 2012-2013 posted a one point increase in Critical Reading (from 470 to 471).

The mean scores for Mathematics (496) and Writing (456) both remained unchanged from the previous school year. Additional Texas items of note from the 2012-2013 College Board report include:

• More than half of the 156,877 public school students who took the SAT were female (84,281).
• Among the Texas public school SAT takers who responded to an optional question about parental education, almost half (45 percent) of the public school students taking the SAT reported coming from families where the highest level of parental education is a high school diploma or no high school diploma.
• Texas mean scores on the SAT have remained stable over the last year, but are below the national average for public school students.
• The most popular AP exams were English Language, U.S. History, World History, English Literature, Spanish Language, and U.S. Government and Politics.
• 173,245 AP exams earned a score of 3 or higher, an increase of 6.3 percent over 2011-2012 and 38.4 percent over the last five years.
• Among the Texas public school SAT takers who responded to optional questions about their college plans, 33 percent indicated they plan to attain a bachelor’s degree and 52 percent hoped to attain a more advanced (master’s or doctoral) degree.
• Of the intended college major/degree-level goal reported by public school SAT takers in Texas, the top three were: Health Professions and related clinical services (23 percent); Engineering (12 percent); and Business Management, Marketing and related support services (11 percent).
• Public school students from the Texas Class of 2013 who took the SAT and/or SAT Subject Tests designated their score reports to be sent to a total of 2,720 institutions of higher education.

The top ten (in descending order) were the University of Texas at Austin; Texas A&M University; Texas State University; Baylor University; the University of Texas – San Antonio; the University of Houston; Texas Tech University; the University of North Texas; Sam Houston State University; and the University of Texas – Arlington.

The College Board’s 2013 Report on College & Career Readiness, which offers a broader view of the most recent SAT data, can be found here press.collegeboard.org/sat.


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