By Shumaya Islam
As a current junior at MCSM, I am personally attempting to balance my normal school work with preparing for the upcoming standardized tests—best known as the SAT and the ACT.
When I first started planning my study guide, all I knew was that the SAT and the ACT were required tests for most colleges around the United States. However I was surprised to realize that this was truly all that I knew.
So, if you’re now in the midst of taking classes while also planning to take the SAT or ACT, and have become utterly confused about why shortening one of these tests by a mere five minutes can make such a huge difference, believe me, you are not alone in this.
So, what is the big deal between these two exams?
After countless hours of online research that consisted of reading those preppy blogs aimed at future Ivy League students, comments on College Confidential from angry hormonal high school students, and even reviews from professional college admission service companies, here is the ultimate guide for taking the SAT or ACT.
Reality Check: The SAT includes trickier questions, while the ACT is known for straightforward questions. However, it is also a huge pain due to the time pressure.
Reality Check: While the SAT passages can be complex, they are much shorter than the ACT.
Reality Check: If you take the SAT, you should be prepared to do quite a lot of math by hand, since there is a “no calculator” section. As for the ACT, it is best if you are good at just doing general math, considering the limited time allowed.
The Possible Worst Part of the Test, aka TIMING:
Okay, now that you have the gist of how both of the exams work, it is up to you to decide which one you should take. Remember, it is not mandatory for you to take both exams, and if you are not certain which exam is right for you, I recommend you taking both, at least once. Here is the schedule of both of the exams for 2016-2017:
As for me, I hope that everyone who is planning to take the upcoming SAT or ACT is in good health, both mentally and physically!