College Admissions Testing

COLLEGE ADMISSIONS TESTING: PSAT, SAT,

SAT II Subject Test, and ACT

There are nearly 30,000 high schools in the United States with a wide range of courses and grading standards. College entrance exams like the SAT I, SAT II, and the ACT help colleges determine who is ready for the academic rigors of college. These standardized tests are designed to compare the millions of students applying for acceptance into colleges. The scores on these tests are very important in the college selection process. Please keep in mind that these scores are only one of the determining factors toward acceptance. It is important to find out the college entrance exams required by the colleges you intend to apply to. This information can be found on the college’s website.

Below is a brief description of each test and an explanation as to who should take the test and when. Also, you will find a number of links that will help you prepare for the test.

PSAT is offered in October. The test provides sophomores and juniors the opportunity to practice for the SAT. Students are issued a study guide when they register to take the test in the guidance office. In December students will receive a score report which serves as an excellent study guide for the SAT. It is highly recommended that Juniors considering college should take the PSAT. During the junior year the PSAT is used to select students for National Merit Scholarships. The results of the PSAT’s have no bearing on acceptance to college it is strictly a practice test. Click on the following link to view a power point that explains how students should utilize their score report. http://professionals.collegeboard.com/profdownload...

SAT I Reasoning Test is designed to measure a student’s ability to handle college level work. The three sections of the test include the verbal, math, and writing tests. They measure the student’s critical thinking and problem solving skills along with the student’s writing abilities. In most cases students are prepared to take their first SAT test in the spring of their junior year. If you are considering taking the test earlier please contact your guidance counselor. Registering for the SAT is done on-line at www.collegeboard.com

SAT II Subject Tests: There are 22 different subject tests designed to measure a student’s knowledge in a specific academic area. Not all colleges require student’s to take SAT II tests, however it is very important to check with the colleges you are applying to and know if they require any of the subject tests. Registering for the SAT II is done on-line at www.collegeboard.com

ACT: test covers four subject tests in Math, English, Reading, and Science. The test still requires students to utilize both their critical thinking and problem solving skills however it is considered a more knowledge based test. Registering for the ACT test can be done on-line atwww.actstudent.org

The PSAT and SAT tests have been redesigned. Students will be taking the new tests starting in the Spring of 2016. The links below explain the changes.


Overview of SAT vs Redesigned SAT

SAT Reading Test

Writing and Language Test

Math Test