College Board

The National Association of Scholars upholds the standards of a liberal arts education that fosters intellectual freedom, searches for the truth, and promotes virtuous citizenship.


The College Board is an ostensibly private body that has acquired a semi-monopoly in higher education assessment. In recent years it has abused its privileged position by revising its examination system to forward progressive ideology.

The College Board’s revised Advanced Placement U.S. History course left out Benjamin Franklin and James Madison. Its revised European History course de-emphasized the history of liberty, ignored the role of religion, and bypassed Christopher Columbus and Winston Churchill.

The College Board has also revised the SAT, making the essay optional, focusing on informational texts, simplifying the math, and eliminating the penalty for guessing. In 2019, the College Board announced the creation of an “adversity score” to calculate students’ privilege or oppression. Under criticism, the College Board replaced the adversity score with “Landscape,” which ranks students on multiple indices of privilege and oppression.

The College Board, moreover, has allied itself with the communist Chinese government. The Board co-sponsors the Chinese government’s Confucius Institutes and it has cooperated with Beijing to develop its Advanced Placement Chinese Language and Culture course.

The College Board faces limited competition, and millions of Americans and thousands of school districts have little choice but to use the College Board’s assessments. The College Board’s primary competitor, the ACT, suffers from similar problems. A second competitor, the Classic Learning Test (CLT) is a start-up with limited market share. The College Board faces no real competitor at all for its Advanced Placement tests.

Congress should encourage the College Board to improve its examinations, ideally by facilitating competition from alternative assessment providers. It should also require as a condition of receiving public funding that the College Board cut its ties with Confucius Institutes and other Chinese government agencies.

Policy Recommendations

Encourage Alternative Assessment Providers

Congress should facilitate the ability of alternative assessment providers to compete with the College Board.

Legislative Language: Amend 20 U.S.C. 7116 (e)(2) (Title IV, Part A, Subpart 1, Sec. 4106: Student Support and Academic Enrichment Grants, Local Educational Agency Applications, Assurances) to include a subsection stating that:

  1. “Each application shall include assurances that the local educational agency, or consortium of such agencies, when seeking financial support for advanced placement assessment, has solicited bids from multiple qualified vendors.”

Require the College Board to Cut Ties with the Chinese Government

Congress should require as a condition for receiving public funding that the College Board cease sponsoring Confucius Institutes and partnering with the Chinese government on activities such as language courses, student programs and trips, and conferences.

Legislative Language: Add to 20 U.S.C. § 9833. Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate programs a subsection that reads, “The Secretary shall award no grants for Advanced Placement tests, teacher training, or any other programs that are affiliated with or aimed at preparation for College Board tests or materials, unless the College Board:

  1. Ceases to co-sponsor Confucius Institutes;
  2. Ceases to participate in any program sponsored directly or indirectly by the Chinese government or government-backed organizations, including via the Chinese International Education Foundation; and
  3. Ceases to accept donations, grants, payments, or any other funds, from the Chinese government, the Chinese Communist Party, or other entities acting on behalf or in cooperation with the Chinese government or Chinese Communist Party.