The SAT vs. The ACT

The SAT:

Introduced in 1926

1.7 million students take the exam each year
The newest version of the exam was released this past March 2016

First administered in 1959
1.92 million students took the ACT last year
This fall, the range of the ACT writing score will change from 1-36 to 2-12

So, which one should I take?

Don’t Take the Wrong One
Don’t listen to bad advice! Most people go through the process, so most people have an opinion. But they aren’t always well-informed.
People give advice like: “Midwestern colleges care more about the ACT.”
Or “you should take the SAT if you aren’t strong in science.”
Both of those ideas are incorrect.

Which exam should I take to get into the best school? The SAT or the ACT? What do the best colleges prefer? Is one easier than the other?

SAT v ACT: Summary
Do take the exam you feel most comfortable with and score highest on.
Do take practice questions on both exams.
Do not take uninformed advice.
Remember updates to the tests have made them now more similar than ever.
College Admissions officers–even at the most elite universities–do not have a preference of exam.

So, REALLY, which one is right for you?

The right exam for you is the one on which you are able to score the highest.

Take a diagnostic exam
Take practice tests
Check your scores
Check with your tutor, English and Math teacher, and your consultant
Colleges DON’T have a preference
Really, they don’t.

The SAT is 3 hours and 50 minutes
The ACT is 3 hours and 35 minutes
Given the recent changes to the SAT, the exams are more alike than ever before.

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