The term ‘mulligan’ is well-known (and often well-used) by golfers to describe a do-over in response to a particularly atrocious or unlucky stroke. Mulligan has, over time, become a generic term for a second chance to perform an action marred by misfortune or ineptitude.
The option of Score Choice for both SAT and ACT, along with the proliferation of superscoring in college admissions offices, has opened the door to millions of mulligans, where students have no reason NOT to take the test again. But rarely do we see a do-over triggered by the test-maker’s failures.
Students who sat for the June 6 SAT know all about how a tiny misprint in a test booklet can cause major test day chaos. The College Board has assured us that the scores from that compromised test will be valid, even with the exclusion of sections 8 and 9. But even if they are, the prospect of taking the next available official SAT just became a little less painful:
Q: Is there an opportunity for a retest?
We remain confident in the reliability of scores from the June 6 administration of the SAT and don’t want to cause undue anxiety for students by making them believe they need to sit for the test again. However, we have waived the fee for the October SAT administration for students who let us know that their testing experience was negatively affected by the printing error and we will continue to do so.
Students who sit for the June SAT often, at least in our experience, sit for the October test as well. So many of the nearly 500,000 students registered for the June fiasco might opt to take advantage of the mulligan and fee waiver, even if they liked their SAT scores. You can’t put a price on a smooth test day experience, but at least in this instance, a rocky one is worth $54.50!