SAT & ACT Testing

Test taking might not be your favorite Saturday activity but students looking to enter college have options for how they will approach this hurdle.

Most colleges will accept either the SAT or ACT. Students may take either or both tests as many times as they want. The admissions staff will generally use the highest score out of all the tests a student takes for comparison with their standards.



The SAT comes in three sections critical reading, math and writing. Each section is worth 800 points. All together then, the SAT is worth 2400 points. Some colleges do not count the writing section. So they only look at the math and reading combined meaning their scores will be out of 1600.


The ACT is made up of four subject area tests English, Mathematics, Reading, Science and an optional writing test. Since the SAT added their writing section, most colleges who take both the SAT and ACT have required that students choosing the ACT take it with the writing test. The ACT composite score is created by averaging the four subject tests together. The highest composite score is a 36. The writing test is scored separately and is out of 12 points.

Opt Out of Testing

Many colleges had decided to do away with testing as a mandatory requirement for admissions. This means students who struggle with taking tests have a new hope in finding a perfect college fit for them without the anxiety of not getting the score they need. These colleges are know as test-free or SAT/ACT optional.