Which test is best for you ACT or SAT?
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Almost every student who ever went to college has taken either the ACT or SAT. Some people say one is easier than the other, but what are the differences?
On the ACT there are four sections: math, reading, science and English, with a high score in each section of 36. In addition to the section scores, the student also earns a cumulative score that reflects the average of the four sections. Along with these four sections, there is one final section of writing, which is optional, where the highest score you can get is 12. The ACT is slightly shorter than the SAT, with it being two hours and fifty five minutes without writing and three hours and forty minutes with writing.
SAT scores range from 400 to 1600. The scores come from adding your results from the math section and the reading/English section. On the SAT, there are two math tests; one allows a calculator and one doesn’t. The SAT is slightly longer. If you take the SAT without writing it is three hours long, and with writing it is three hours and fifty minutes.
Although there are some differences, there are also similarities. Some of those are that both tests are accepted by all U.S. colleges; there is no penalty for guessing; the essays are optional; and both measure what you learn in high school and assess how prepared you are for college.
In 2016, the College Board won a 14.3 million dollar bid to have the SAT become the standardized test for public schools in Illinois. For the past 15 years, Illinois public schools administered the ACT.
However, many private schools like Mount Carmel still host an in-house ACT for students. This is a great opportunity for students since it saves them from having to take the test on a Saturday morning.
One more piece of advice that applies to either test: be sure you use your time wisely, and carefully read each question and answer.
Nick Gulotta is a junior at Mount Carmel High School in Chicago, Illinois. Gulotta grew up in Lansing, where he attended Memorial Junior High School. Gulotta...