Tag Archives: planning

Back in the early days of college admissions testing, students generally tested at the same time. However, we’ve come a long way from the days of exclusively testing at the end of junior year and the beginning of senior year. The big tests now grace nearly every month of the calendar year. In fact, no matter what week or month you read this, lots of high schoolers are preparing to take their SAT or ACT. So, before you decide when you or your teen should sit for these very influential exams, consider the options… MONTH BY MONTH What is the case for the February ACT? What is the case for the March SAT? What is the case for the April ACT? What is the case for the May SAT? What is the case for the June SAT & ACT? What is the case for the July ACT? What is the…

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From September to June, high schoolers can count on an opportunity to take at least one of the two big college admissions tests every month. Some months, however, offer ambitious test takers shots at both the SAT and ACT. Sitting for both exams in rapid succession can be a better idea than you’d think, especially in December. What makes December such a good month to take the SAT and ACT? For one thing, the tests fall early in a month that gets busier as it progresses. The SAT is traditionally administered on the first Saturday of December, followed by the ACT the next weekend. This means students can finish both tests before the first holiday parties of the season. December also deserves strong consideration for testing because the timing meets the needs of both high school juniors and seniors at this point in the academic year: SENIORS who haven’t yet…

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Traditionally, high school students are supposed to take the SAT and/or ACT at the end of junior year and, if needed, the beginning of senior year. COVID-19 ruined most opportunities to test in the spring of 2020, but College Board and ACT have responded with a ton of fall options. If all goes well, September will be a month like no other with more official SATs and ACTs than every before. That’s good news, as September may be the best month of the year for testing? Why should people get excited about testing right as they get back to school? Well, obviously, July and August have a lot to do with what makes September so great for testing. During those blissful summer months, most teens historically enjoy a much lighter academic and extracurricular schedule. The current pandemic has further constrained activity to the point where some SAT & ACT prep…

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With all the uncertainty swirling around school openings this fall, the last thing most families want to consider is SAT and ACT testing. However, the recent rash of colleges declaring test optional policies for the HS class of 2021 shouldn’t be viewed as respite from admissions testing. Most attributes of college applications–near-perfect grades, outstanding extracurriculars, poignant essays, and glowing recommendations–are also “optional” but 100% necessary for those seeking entry to competitive schools and maybe some merit aid to boot. Make no mistake: high school juniors and seniors should STRONGLY consider testing this fall. Of course, the rash of test cancellations over the last several months may discourage even the most proactive planners. The good news amidst so much bad is that College Board and ACT have added an unprecedented number of test dates to the beginning of the 2020-21 calendar: SAT – August 29 ACT – September 12 ACT –…

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I’ve never been a big fan of the June SAT and ACT—most teens are simply too mentally tired at the end of a long stretch of academic exertion to do their best–but their reliable arrival has always signaled the end of the school year. Well, COVID-19 has temporarily upended most traditions, and testing hardly seems feasible while school buildings lie empty as their students and faculty shelter in place. The March SAT (at least in some places), April ACT, and May SAT were all victims of the coronavirus crisis. Now we look to the June tests… JUNE SAT AND SUBJECT TESTS College Board wasted no time in shutting down their June tests: “To keep students safe, and in alignment with public health guidance and school closures across 192 countries, we will not be able to administer the SAT or SAT Subject Tests on June 6, 2020.” Students targeting the June…

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Coming into March 2020, most high schoolers had the rest of the school year mapped out: Spring Break, state tests, prom, finals and maybe more tests like APs, SATs, ACTs, and Subject Tests before the long-awaited summer vacation. No matter what you planned, the global pandemic of COVID-19 delivered a stark reminder of Field Marshal Helmuth von Moltke’s oft-quoted insight: No plan survives contact with the enemy. This reminder resonates at a time when our greatest enemy may be uncertainty. As I write this, we have no idea when closed schools will resume or if any spring sports or activities may be salvaged or written off as losses. We know that the April ACT and May SAT have been cancelled, but will the June SAT and ACT run? Will those online AP exams carry the same weight as the traditional ones? We honestly have no idea what next week holds,…

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