A lot of parents and students want to know whether it’s better to take the SAT or the ACT, what the differences are, and why they should concentrate on one or the other.
I’m not here to push the SAT. Even though this site is called SAT Success Secrets, almost everything I write applies to both exams, and I tutor kids for both exams as well.
People have their individual preferences, and there are good arguments on both sides.
Today I came across an opinion that I’d never heard before, so I wanted to share it with you.
It’s from www.icollegecounselor.net:
“Here is the big difference: tradition and expectation. Colleges typically expect a student living in the Northeast (or on the West Coast) to be taking the SAT. And when they don’t, it can raise a red flag. It might not, but it could. And the last thing an applicant wants to do is give the admission office a reason to doubt, question, or reject her. So, stick with what is the norm from your high school.”
I’m not a college counselor, so I can’t vouch for their argument. It makes a lot of sense to me, though, and I plan to look into it.
They also go on to say:
“One final thought – if you’re from an area where both are widely used, take a practice test in both early in the process. Unless the ACT is significantly higher, stick with the SAT. Our tutoring experts tell us it is much more difficult to improve your ACT scores.”
Here I agree.
I’ve never heard anyone say it before, and in fact I sometimes hear the opposite. I might not say “much more difficult”, but it is more difficult to improve your ACT scores than it is your SAT scores.
You can read the entire article here.
And you can read more about the substantive differences between the 2 tests here.
I have more to say about this, but it gets a little technical. Let me know if you want me to go into it further.