Do I Need to Take the SAT or ACT?
Compared to a few years ago, the number of colleges that require the SAT or the ACT is much lower. With this in mind it’s only natural to think that you don’t need to take one of these tests. The preparations for the SAT or ACT can be exhausting and overwhelming, so why would you go through the entire ordeal if it’s not required at all?
Despite this, it’s still worthwhile to take the time to prepare for and ace one of these tests, and many students still opt to do so. In fact, many take both, even if the schools they’re applying to don’t require them. Believe it or not, there are some very appealing reasons to make this decision, especially if you’re apply to the top colleges and universities in the United States. Here are some of the top reasons why you definitely need to take the SAT/ACT:
1. Provide More Information for the Admission Board
If you’ve decided to pursue an education at a more selective Ivy League school you should definitely consider taking these tests. In fact, any admission board at any college will appreciate the extra information on you and your success that they provide.
Since both tests are accepted and appreciated equally by different committees, taking at least one will help you to better demonstrate your capabilities and knowledge.
2. Increase the Chances of Getting Financial Aid
It’s no secret that many students struggle with finances today. College isn’t cheap, but thankfully some schools are very generous in terms of merit-based aid. Therefore, even if your chosen school doesn’t require test scores from the ACT or SAT, you may want to consider taking the tests to boost your chances of being considered for a financial aid or a scholarship.
3. Improve Acceptance Chances for Selective Programs
Any student applying to a high-demand program will know that sometimes you can get accepted to a school but not the specific program you want. Taking the SAT or ACT and getting a high score, regardless of the school’s requirements, is sometimes the safest way to get into your chosen program.
4. Give You More Options
Consider taking the SAT or ACT if you want to enjoy more flexibility in your school choices and education path. For those with plenty of obligations and little time, taking one or both of these standardized tests can help you place out of 101-level courses early on and dive straight into more program-specific classes your first year in college.
Taking Both Tests Is Much Easier
Do you know why many students choose to take both these tests before they apply for college? The biggest reason is, of course, increased chances of getting accepted. However, one other reason is the fact that by preparing for one test, you are also preparing for the other one.
The SAT and ACT may be different, but in their base they are actually very similar, especially now that the SAT was redesigned. This means that your efforts won’t be in vain even if you fail one of the tests, as it has helped you prepare for – and have a better idea of what you expect from – the other one. Mastering the second test is much easier once you prepared for the first one, so why not use this opportunity to get two great scores to add to your admission application?
Still unsure of whether or not you should take the SAT or ACT? If you decided to prepare for one or both, there is one important advice we can give you – study ahead and study well. The results of these tests can determine the success of your college application.
Unsure of where to begin with your journey to college? Schedule a call with our expert student success team to determine the best next steps for you.