Plan For College

Friday, March 11, 2011

5 Things to Know about College Testing (SAT and ACT)

The Plan For College Guest Blog Post Series, Article 6
This is Kathryn Favaro's second post as a guest blogger for the Plan For College blog. She is a certified college admissions counselor, and she empowers and motivates students and their families in their plan for college. Connect with Favaro College Counseling and The College Planning Group on Facebook for important deadline reminders and college planning tips.

Also check out the new College Planning Timeline for Students and Parents. This 15 page report has a timeline for 9th grade, 10th grade, 11th grade, and 12th grade. There are sections for students and parents that outline the responsibilities for both throughout the student's high school career. Use this resource and Kathryn's College Testing tips below to help you get in to the schools of your choice. 

5 Things to Know about College Testing

1. Get a feel for college testing in the Fall by taking the Preliminary SAT (PSAT). The PSAT will give you experience in college testing and help you identify your current strengths and weaknesses. Plus, your test scores will automatically enter you into the competition for National Merit Scholarships. This test should be offered at your local high school on Wednesday October 12 and Saturday October 15.

2. The SAT and ACT are the same (kind of). Either test is accepted by all colleges in the United States. So ideally, you should try taking both tests to see where you score higher.

3. The SAT and ACT are different. Remember, these two tests are created by two distinct companies and cover different subjects. The SAT covers Critical Reading, Math, and Writing. The ACT covers English, Math, Reading, Science Reasoning and Writing. Research both tests. Take both tests.

4. Prepare! Do not walk into the SAT or ACT without doing any studying. This would be like walking into your varsity basketball playoff game without practicing. Invest in some test prep books. Take practice tests and review your results. Maybe attend a test prep group or consider one-on-one tutoring.

5. Create a personal test plan. Start testing your junior year and finish testing by December of your senior year. Take a look at all the test dates offered and figure out the best times for you to test. Try to take each test at least once and leave plenty of time for studying and test prep.

To learn more about the SAT and college planning process, fill out the form below to receive our 15-page college planning timeline with checklists for all four years of high school:













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Have any questions about the SAT or ACT? Please comment below.

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