The Persisting Racial Gap on the SAT College Entrance Examination

In 2011, 215,816 African-American high school seniors took the SAT college entrance examination. They represented 13 percent of all SAT test takers in the Class of 2011.

The mean score for blacks on the combined critical reading and mathematical portions of the SAT was 855. This was a two-point decline from a year ago.

The mean score for whites on the reading and mathematics sections of the SAT was 1063, 208 points higher than the mean score for blacks.

The long-term trend in the racial scoring gap on the SAT is not encouraging. Since 1988, the racial gap on the reading and mathematics sections of the SAT has increased from 189 points to 208 points.

Related Articles


  1. Isn’t this distorting the real situation by not taking into account the change in the makeup of who is taking the test each year? I see this same data badly misrepresented again and again. It is about time we all started talking about what is really happening not what we can misrepresent the statistics to show.

Leave a Reply

Get the JBHE Weekly Bulletin

Receive our weekly email newsletter delivered to your inbox

Latest News

Three African Americans Appointed to New Academic Positions

Leon Prieto, Kofi Afrifah, and Andrea Moore have been appointed to new academic positions at Clayton University, Bowie State University, and Savannah State University, respectively.

Historic HBCU Landmark Revitalized Through National Park Service Grant

Through three restoration grants totaling $2 million, the Rosenwald Practice School and Principal House will be fully restored, becoming the new home for the Northeastern North Carolina African American Research and Cultural Heritage Institute.

Five Black Leaders Appointed to Administrative Positions

Here is this week’s roundup of African American who have been appointed to new administrative positions at colleges and universities throughout the United States. If you have news for our appointments section, please email the information to

North Carolina A&T University Establishes Research Partnership with Collins Aerospace

“There are direct relations to the research we do in the College of Engineering and the mission purpose of Collins Aerospace,” said Stephanie Luster-Teasley, interim dean of the College of Engineering at North Carolina A&T State University. “Being able to partner with Collins really gives our students the opportunities for hands-on research at each level – undergraduate and graduate.”

Featured Jobs