Don’t be fooled for a second by some of the comments coming out of high schools and places of higher learning. Lately, there has been talk from educational institutions that the ACT and SAT will no longer be required for some colleges and universities. Trust me, you will be kicking yourself if you think a high ACT/SAT score will not open doors for you that would otherwise be closed.
Even if the school does not require a graduating high school senior to take one of these standardized exams, what is the harm in seeing how well they can do on these tests? If a poor score is not going to be looked at, then no harm, no foul. But if the student achieves a relatively good score, then submitting that score to the school will only increase your chances of getting accepted.
When Should a High School Student First Take the ACT/SAT?
Students should start signing up for one of these standardized exams during their junior year. By then, they will have experienced some of the more challenging classes they will encounter in high school, and it should help them prepare for the exam in the process.
What Is a Good Score?
That is a bit of a trick question. What you may see as a good score may not be a good score for the next student. Instead, ask your parents, counselor, and teachers what score would be appropriate for you. Also, plenty of research you can do online will tell you what percentile you will fall into based on your ACT/SAT score. If you can score in the top 25th percentile, you are in good shape!
Other Tips for Prospective Exam-Takers
I have helped high school students for two decades prepare for taking the ACT and SAT. In addition, iAchieve has plenty of professional tutors that make it their sole goal to ensure the student achieves their best score possible.
- Take the test as often as you need. This is not a one-and-done type exam. If you don’t like your score the first, second, or third time, retake it. Your highest score will be the score that matters anyway. Might as well keep on taking it until you get the score you are happy with.
- Study with a tutor that has scored high on these exams themselves. Why receive tutoring from someone who has not achieved the score that you are hoping for?
- Take the practice exams online. This way you will know your most top subjects and which areas you need to study a bit more. These practice exams will provide the score you earned afterward as well.
- There’s no penalty for guessing on the exam. If you don’t know the correct answer, take a chance. They will count up the correct answers, not the wrong ones.
- Be sure to get a good night of rest before the exam and know everything you need to bring to the testing facility. Apparently, you may not need an ID to vote nowadays, but you still need your ID to take these exams.
Don’t Regret It Later
If you wait to take either of these exams, you will regret it later on. Try to earn the best score possible during your junior year, and then you can go through your senior year in high school with your sense of achievement in the back of your mind. Don’t think for a second these exams will not matter down the road. Do your best, and you will not have to worry whether your school of choice will take into account your score or not.
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