ADMISSIONS (SAT/ACT) TESTING THOUGHTS
- Over 1,800 4-year colleges/universities have waived the SAT/ACT requirement for the class of 2023. This is more than two thirds of the 2,300 bachelor-degree-granting institutions in the U.S. (Some schools only exempt students who meet minimum grade or class-rank criteria; others use test scores solely for placement purposes. Check individual schools’ websites for details.) For more information, visit the website for the National Center for Fair and Open Testing (FairTest).
- All Oregon universities no longer require the SAT or ACT.
- Be aware that some of these schools have become test optional (SAT/ACT isn’t required; but if you submit it, it will be considered), and others have become test blind (SAT/ACT won’t be considered as a factor in admission to the school).
- Highly-selective schools seem to be more likely to use SAT/ACT scores as a significant factor in admission, even when they are test optional.
- Students whose GPA is markedly lower than a college’s average accepted GPA may be asked to submit test scores, even to a test-optional school. They may also choose to submit test scores to demonstrate their academic potential when it isn’t fully shown by their GPA.
- Test-optional and test-blind schools often waive the SAT/ACT requirement for scholarships, as well, but don’t bet on it. Check individual schools’ websites for details.
- I suggest that juniors who need to take an SAT/ACT do so by the end of winter term.
If you’d like to discuss this further, please let me know. I’ll be happy to schedule an appointment with you. Lori Sauter [firstname.lastname@example.org]
SAT/ACT/AP EXAM SCHEDULES
SAT vs. ACT (Princeton Review)
SAT vs. ACT (Prep Scholar)
How long should I study?
PrepScholar suggests this for the SAT:
Once you have an initial score based on the PSAT or an online practice test, figure out your target score. Your target score will be based on colleges you want to go to. Then, plan to study for the following lengths of time based on how much you need your target score to improve over your base score:
0-50 SAT Point Improvement: 10 hours
50-100 Point Improvement: 20 hours
100-200 Point Improvement: 40 hours
200-300 Point Improvement: 80 hours
300-500 Point Improvement: 150 hours+
Need help preparing for SAT/ACT tests?
- Free online study options (such as the Kahn Academy and the LearningExpress Library)
- Checkout-able books in the Career Center and in South’s library
- Information about test-prep courses in the Career Center (All test-prep courses incur some cost, and South does not endorse specific classes.)
Come by to see which method sounds right for you.
The ACCUPLACER READING Test may be used by Lane Community College (and other community colleges and vocational schools) to place you in appropriate reading and writing courses. Lane may also be able to place you in your courses without requiring a test. Visit its Testing Office webpage to learn about other placement options.
The ACT (American College Test) is a national college-entrance exam accepted by virtually all 4-year U.S. colleges/universities. It is a curriculum-based test with sections of reading, English, math and science reasoning. An essay segment is optional, and almost no colleges require it. Test scores range from 1-36. If possible, 4-year-college-bound juniors should test by the end of winter term. Seniors should test by fall at the latest. See above link for date and deadline schedules. For more information, contact the Career Center (Lori Sauter, email@example.com).
The AP (Advanced Placement) Tests offer students an opportunity to earn credit or advanced standing at many of the nation’s colleges and universities, usually after taking a yearlong AP course. SEHS administers AP tests for courses offered at South. A list of these courses can be found in this year’s curriculum guide. Test scores range from 1-5 and are reported in July and August. Colleges vary in policies granting credit, ranging from granting a full year’s worth of credit to granting no credit. They may also offer introductory course exemption. Students should check with colleges for individual AP-credit policies. See above link for test dates. Test registration takes place within the classes, themselves. Visit the Advanced Placement (AP) Information page on this website for more information about AP at South.
The ALEKS Placement, Preparation and Learning (PPL) Tests may be used by Lane Community College to place you in appropriate math courses. Lane may also be able to place you in your courses without requiring a test. Visit its Testing Office webpage to learn about other placement options.
The ASVAB (Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery) measures basic skills and vocational aptitude. It is administered by the military without obligation and without charge. It is a great career exploration tool for all students, regardless of post-high-school plans. South doesn’t routinely offer the ASVAB, but contact the Career Center (Lori Sauter, firstname.lastname@example.org) for suggestions as to where to take it.
IB (International Baccalaureate) Exams are available to students participating in South’s International High School program (IHS). They may opt to take individual certificate tests or the full diploma (six tests including two during junior year and four during senior year). They are similar to AP exams in providing the opportunity to earn college credit or advanced standing. The tests are offered in Literature, History of the Americas, Biology, Physics, Chemistry, Math Studies, French, Japanese, Spanish, and Economics. Scores range from 1-7, and are sent out in July. As with the AP exam, colleges vary in policies granting credit, including granting a full year’s worth of credit, a semester’s worth of credit, and/or course exemption. Some also award credit for students having taken the IHS-required Theory of Knowledge Course and/or attaining the full diploma. Students should check with colleges for individual credit policies. For more information, contact the IHS office (Melanie Namkoong, email@example.com).
The PSAT/NMSQT (National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test) is a standardized test that provides practice for the SAT. It also automatically enters testers who are high-school juniors into the National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC) competition. The PSAT measures critical reading skills, math problem-solving skills, and writing skills. At South the PSAT is administered on a Wednesday in mid-October that is selected each year by the College Board. CB expects to shift to a fully digital version of the PSAT by fall, 2023 in the U.S.. For more information, contact the Career Center (Lori Sauter, firstname.lastname@example.org).
The SAT (an acronym which no longer has any meaning) is a national college-entrance exam accepted by virtually all 4-year colleges/universities in the U.S.. It is a test with math and evidence-based reading and writing sections. The essay section is no longer offered except in states where it’s required for SAT School Day administrations for accountability purposes (not Oregon). The College Board expects to shift to a fully digital version of the SAT by spring, 2024 in the U.S.. Test scores range from 400-1600. Four-year-college-bound juniors needing to take the test should complete their first one by the end of winter term. Seniors should test by fall at the latest. See above link for date and deadline schedules. For more information, contact the Career Center (Lori Sauter, email@example.com).
The SAT Subject Tests were one-hour tests designed to test a student’s depth of knowledge in core subjects. As of 01/19/2021, the College Board is no longer offering the Subject Tests.