The SAT and ACT are standardized tests that colleges use as part of their application process.  These tests are administered by the College Board and American College Testing respectively.  

What is the SAT Exam?

A:         The SAT or Scholastic Aptitude Test is a college entrance exam administered by The College Board.  The College Board offers this test several times a year and it can be taken more than once.  It is your responsibility to register and sit for this test in advance in order to make timely application to your targeted colleges.  There are limited seats for testing, so early registration is suggested in order to secure your desired testing date and location.  Most students take the SAT for the first time during the Spring of their junior year and a second time during the fall of their senior year.  SAT Test Dates

What is the ACT Exam?

A:         The ACT Exam or American College Test is a college entrance exam administered by ACT.org. This test is offered several times a year and it can be taken more than once. It is your responsibility to register and sit for this test in advance, in order to make timely application to your targeted colleges.  There are limited seats for testing, so early registration is suggested in order to secure your desired testing date and location. Issaquah High PTSA offers practice tests for the ACT (Mock ACT Exam) to better prepare for the actual test date.  Practice makes perfect!

ACT Test Dates

What is the PSAT Exam?

A:         The PSAT or Preliminary SAT (also known as the National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT) is a test offered one time each fall to provide firsthand practice for the actual SAT while acting as a qualifying test for the National Merit Scholarship competition.  The PSAT can be taken by anybody, but only Juniors may qualify for the National Merit Scholarship competition. This program is co-sponsored by the College Board and the National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC).

You must sign up for the PSAT/NMSQT at your high school or at another high school in your community. This test is administered by high schools, not through national test centers. Please note that each high school chooses only one October test date and it is your responsibility to register and sit for this test.  IHS hosts the PSAT during school hours for Sophomores and Juniors.  This year's test date will be October 11, 2017. PTSA does NOT offer a Mock exam for the PSAT/NMSQT.

Which College Entrance Exam should I take – the ACT or the SAT?

A:         The answer depends on which colleges you plan on applying to and which tests they will accept.  However, many students will take both tests in order to have the most options when the time comes to fill out college applications.  Many students also take both tests because the tests are different from each other and on an individual basis, one student may perform better on one test over the other.  Many college applications will let you submit the best score for either test – so taking both tests could be a good strategy.  You are allowed to take each test more than once, so plan accordingly if you think you might want to do so.

What are the basic differences between the ACT and the SAT?

A:         The Princeton Review has provided this ACT/SAT exam differences discussion to be used as a rough guideline of differences between the two exams.