When your son or daughter comes home some night in their junior or senior year, they may throw around the term "ACT" when you are discussing college planning with them. For many years the only commonly known college admissions test in our area was the "SAT". Many parents probably took the SAT in their preparation for college. The ACT is a test that does exactly what the SAT is designed to do. Its' purpose is to determine a high school students potential for success at the post-secondary level. As a matter of fact, the ACT is accepted at more colleges and universities across the US than the SAT.
It benefits our students to take both tests. In fact we encourage our juniors to take both the SAT and ACT during the spring of 11th grade and again in the fall of 12th.
The ACT is different in several ways from the SAT. Its' content and method of scoring differ significantly from the College Board's college admissions test. The SAT credits students points for correct answers on the test while penalizing the student when they answer incorrectly. This is why the SAT has a reputation as being "beatable".
The ACT only credits a test taker when they score an answer correctly. The SAT (old version) has a math and verbal section only. The ACT has math, English, reading and science reasoning. The method of score reporting is also significantly different for each test.
Statistics have shown that as many as one of three students will score significantly higher on one test versus the other if they take both. Statistics also show that the percent of improvement for students who take the ACT a second time is greater then those who take the SAT. For this reason we encourage our students to take both tests more than once.
Students can register for either test with a paper application or by registering on-line. Information related to registration and test dates is available on other pages on this site.