Interview with Les Perelman

What do you think about the College Board making the writing portion of the SAT optional?

I think that it is potentially a good thing. David Coleman has asked me to provide some input and there is a possibility, albeit a slim one, that the College Board will produce a writing assessment that will measure such skills as the abilities to synthesize information from texts and critically assess the underlying assumptions of an argument.

What surprised you most about your meeting with David Coleman, new director of the SAT in July of 2012?

That he actually listened to me.

How did you get interested in writing assessment?

You know the answer to this question. It was part of my job as a postdoc at USC. I found out I was good at it, and the more I learned, the more I discovered how complex are the questions surrounding it.


Frankfurt, Harry G. (2005). On bullshit. Princeton, NJ: Princeton UP.

Schön, Donald A. (1983). The reflective practitioner: How professionals think in action. New York, NY: Basic Books.

Schön, Donald A. (1987). Educating the reflective practitioner: Toward a new design for teaching and learning in the professions. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass Inc.

Shermis, Mark D. (2014). State-of-the-art automated essay scoring: Competition, results, and future directions from a United States demonstration. Assessing Writing, 20, 53-76.

Winterowd, W. Ross. (1970). The grammar of coherence. College English, 31(8), 828-835.

left arrow home button