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TNTP Re-imagine Teaching

College Board and Chan Zuckerberg Initiative Partner to Boost College Access

May 16, 2017 | College Board

The College Board and Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI) today announced they are launching a two-year partnership that will help millions of students better prepare for college and career. The College Board will dramatically expand access to unique, personalized learning pathways—including PSAT-related assessments, interactive SAT® practice, and Advanced Placement® courses—all of which help prepare and propel students forward and identify a postsecondary program that best fits their needs and passions. The partnership will concentrate on giving students in lower-income communities and rural areas greater access to these tools and resources.

“When we look at students in America, we see incredible talent, but there are too many barriers in the way,” said College Board President David Coleman. “The College Board and the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative are united in our belief that if we clear a path for all students, they won’t just walk down it, they’ll run.”

The College Board transforms assessment results into powerful tools that help students identify clear steps to better prepare and plan for college. Personalized opportunity begins with the more than 4.3 million students who take a PSAT-related assessment each year. Through the partnership with CZI, the College Board will expand access to PSAT-related assessments, which will give more students a set of personalized recommendations to help focus their test preparation and AP® coursework. 

The partnership enables the College Board to bring to scale successful initiatives, including:

  • Introducing more students to Official SAT Practice on Khan Academy, which provides free, world-class and personalized online study tools for all students to prepare for the SAT. Newly released data link Official SAT Practice to substantial score gains from the PSAT/NMSQT to the SAT. Research confirmed that practice on Khan Academy® advanced students regardless of gender, race, income, and high school GPA. 
  • Connecting more students to near-peer advisers through the College Advising Corps. CAC advisers are recent college graduates, many the first in their family to attend college, who serve full time in underrepresented high schools across the United States, providing personalized advice to high school students about navigating the path to college.
  • Helping to bring AP Computer Science Principles (AP CSP) to every school district in the country, with a special focus on rural communities. The course, which launched in 2016, is transforming the way that students, especially underrepresented and female students, begin studying STEM subjects. AP CSP goes beyond coding, introducing students to the foundational concepts of computer science and challenging them to explore how technology can impact the world, with a focus on creative problem solving and real-world applications. 

The College Board will partner with other organizations who work closely with students and educators, including the Council of the Great City Schools, the National Rural Education Association, TNTP, Character Lab, and Stanford University, and districts and states across the nation to expand access to these resources.

“The work being done by the College Board to help students tailor their SAT practice and prepare for college is a promising approach to scaling personalized learning,” said Jim Shelton, President of Education for the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative. “The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative is proud to support the College Board in its effort to reach more students across the country and fundamentally improve the access, experience, and preparation they make available to each student.”

At the heart of the partnership between the College Board and CZI will be research and continuous improvement and accountability. The College Board will use data to drive actions and regularly monitor and modify approaches to best serve students. To better understand and clear invisible barriers that can hold students back, the College Board and CZI are convening the best minds and world-class researchers in the field of academic motivation, including Angela Duckworth and Greg Walton. The research around academic motivation is aimed at better understanding the role that qualities and beliefs, such as dedication, persistence, or sense of belonging play in advancing students toward college and career.

A video highlighting how students will benefit from the partnership is available online.