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SAT & ACT College Entrance Exams


Each SCS junior will take the PSAT test in October. This standardized test is a practice for the SAT and gives students a qualifying chance to enter the National Merit Scholarship Competition based on their PSAT score. The PSAT will measure critical reading skills, math problem-solving skills, and writing skills. PSAT results show a student’s strengths and weaknesses and allow for added study over areas of needed improvement before the formal SAT is taken preferably in the spring of a student’s junior year. The PSAT maps out clearly a student’s score compared to other students seeking similar college entrance and assists in assessment of student access to college of their choice. Your PSAT results will be reviewed with the student at SCS and mailed home for further consultation with parents for future planning. The PSAT is an excellent practice for the SAT as one becomes familiar with the kinds of questions and the exact directions that are included in the SAT.

SAT and ACT baseline scores should be obtained the spring semester of the junior year to allow for adequate time for re-testing, if necessary, to obtain sub-scores in the SAT and complete unit higher scores in the ACT to gain admission and scholarship possibilities from the student’s top college choices.

Most colleges do not have a preference of which entrance test applicants take, but check with the schools of your choice if one entry test is preferred over another. Spend time on each test’s website to understand more fully on which test you may score higher. Many students find it beneficial to take both tests knowing the schools will then use the higher scores in determining their entry and financial aid package.

The SAT Subject Tests are used by some colleges to help place a student in the appropriate class and/or admission. Check with the colleges on your interest list to know whether or not it can be beneficial for you to have some SAT Subject Test scores. There are 20 SAT Subject Tests available today spanning from Molecular Biology, Literature, Math, US History, Spanish and more. The SAT Subject Test cannot be used in place of the SAT Reasoning test and/or ACT Reasoning test.

SAT.collegeboard.com is the SAT home website with registration and dates of testing linked
ACTstudent.org is the ACT home website with registration and dates of testing linked
GoCollege.com offers SAT and PSAT descriptions and test taking tips
Number2.com offers free ACT and SAT practice site and vocabulary builder
Princeton Review.com offers free demos and for purchase review kits for the SAT and ACT tests
Petersons.com has many helpful links on understanding the ACT test with for purchase course options, they also has information about the SAT subject area tests