There are many acronyms in the business of college applications. As you begin to explore the admissions process with your children, you will find many of these letters but you may not know what they all mean. Here is some basic information about the Standardized Aptitude Test and the ACT Assessment.
The ACT Assessment® is designed to assess high school students' general educational development and their ability to complete college-level work.
The ACT Assessment, or "A-C-T" as it is commonly called, is a national college admission examination that consists of tests in: English, Reading, Mathematics, Science Reasoning. The ACT is a good option for those students who are interested in pursuing a career in a science-related field or have a strong science aptitude. There are registration forms in the Guidance Office. You can also register online at www.act.org
The ACT Assessment tests are universally accepted for college admission
The ACT Assessment tests are curriculum based. The ACT Assessment is not an aptitude or an IQ test. Instead, the questions on the ACT are directly related to what you have learned in your high school courses in English, mathematics, and science.
The ACT Assessment is more than a test. In addition to the four tests, the ACT also provides test takers with a unique interest inventory that provides valuable information for career and educational planning and a student profile section that provides a comprehensive profile of your work in high school and your future plans.
SAT I: Reasoning Test.
What are the similarities and differences between the SAT and the PSAT/NMSQT?
Both the SAT and the PSAT/NMSQT measure verbal and math reasoning skills. The PSAT/NMSQT contains actual SAT questions but is designed to be slightly easier than the SAT. The PSAT/NMSQT also measures writing skills. The PSAT/NMSQT is two hours and 10 minutes, whereas the SAT is a three-hour and forty-five minute test. The SAT is used for college admission, but PSAT/NMSQT scores are not sent to colleges. The PSAT/NMSQT Score Report gives you personalized feedback on areas in which you could improve, along with specific advice on how to improve. Taking the PSAT/NMSQT gives you a chance to qualify for scholarship and recognition programs and is a good way to practice for the SAT I Reasoning Test. The PSAT is offered every October to junior and sophomore students.
What do my SAT I scores tell college admission staff about me?
Your SAT I scores can tell admission staff how you compare with other students who took the test. That's because all scores are reported on the 200-to-800 scale. For example, if your verbal, math, essay scores were about 500, which is the mean (average) score, college admission staff would know you scored about as well as half of the students who took the test.
Why do I have to take the SAT I and why is it required by so many colleges?You may have to take the test because it is an admission requirement of the college you are interested in attending. Many colleges require the SAT I for admission because it is a standard way of measuring a student's ability to do college-level work.
Some schools do not require SAT scores for admission and instead offer a placement test or interview to determine admission status. For schools that do not base admission solely on SAT scores, go to www.fairtest.org/optstate.html . This list includes colleges and universities that deemphasize the use of standardized tests by making admissions decisions about substantial numbers of applicants who recently graduated from U.S. high schools without using the SAT I or ACT such as:
• Art Institute of Philadelphia, PA
• Art Institute of Pittsburgh, PA
• Chatham College, Pittsburgh, PA
• Curtis Institute of Music, Philadelphia, PA
• DeVry University, Philadelphia, PA (Fort Washington)3
• Dickinson College, Carlisle, PA
• Franklin and Marshall College, Lancaster, PA
• Gratz College, Melrose Park, PA
• Juniata College, Huntingdon, Pennsylvania
• Messiah University, Grantham, PA
• Muhlenberg College, Allentown, PA
• Peirce College, Philadelphia PA
• Pennsylvania Coll. of Technology, Williamsport, PA
• Seton Hill University, Greensburg, PA
• Susquehanna University, Selinsgrove, PA
• Ursinus College, Collegeville, PA
The admission packet for each of the schools listed above will list the requirements for that school. For information on schools in other states, go to the Fair Test website.