My SAT essay score was a 6. I got two threes, which signifies that I have a mediocre grasp of the English language at best, and could use some work stringing together my arguments.
Now, my style might get a little florid; I take no small delight in playing with my words, but I have never--from any other source--had it suggested to me that my writing was mediocre. Is it a difference between my writing in the comfort of the home and writing in a high pressure test environment? I answer: I have never received less than an A on any essay based exam. It is seldom that I even get points deducted, let alone receive something equivalent with a C.
A C is well into seppuku territory.
Why do I bother to revisit this point? Because Dogmeat got a similar essay score on his SAT. The time given to the grading of each essay is around 2 minutes, which means that much of your score is based on assumptions and first impressions. The greatest guarantors of a good score are pretty script and a few well placed buzzwords.
My script will never be aesthetically pleasing. It has become more legible with time, but despite my efforts, it hardly looks like it belongs to an advanced life-form. Moreover, the language I use in tests--though generally flawless--is simple. I write with directness and clarity, and concern myself more with making my point than with making it too prettily; though simple, they are substantial. But when the only consideration given is that of the first glance, and when the essay is not read in its entirety, I hardly make a smashing impression.
We are left with two possible conclusions. First, that Andrew and I both just had off days in our writing, and the essay portion accurately diagnosis writing ability. Or else, the essay portion is a flawed assessment of capability.
Given that I have never repeated a poor essay for a grade, and that I have written essays across multiple disciplines, and for some notoriously tough professors, I not so humbly submit that the first option is ridiculous. Also, being familiar with my younger brother and his intellect, I submit that he will reiterate my point, emphatically.
If a portion of the test grade is to be subjective, then the essay should be read, not glanced at. For my own sake, I don't really care. The good people of the College Board may bite me. But it gets more on my nerves when I see Dogmeat get the same score; partially because his personality is one which feels a greater need for affirmation and approbation, and also because he almost certainly did not get the score he merited.
We write our deep thoughts a touch--alright, quite--messily, and I think that is why we got marked down. Thinking back on some of the near illegible comments left on my papers, I wonder how my profs would have fared.