US Application Timeline: When do you take the SAT or ACT?
If you are planning to apply to a US college or university for undergraduate studies, taking the required standardized admissions tests such as the SAT or ACT will most likely be a major part of your preparation process. As a matter fact, altogether it is a three-year plan starting in grade 10.
It is important to start familiarizing yourself with the SAT or ACT standardized test format and topics by taking the Preliminary SAT (PSAT). It is also sometimes referred to as the NMSQT (National Merit Scholarship Qualification Test). The PSAT will expose you to a knowledge and skill-testing structure that is similar to that of the SAT, which includes topics in critical reading, mathematics and writing. You can take the PSAT at your high school or a high school in your district. Find out from your High School Counsellor how to sign up for the exam. The dates for the PSAT are October 17th and 20th, 2012. You can get more information on the PSAT by going here: http://www.collegeboard.com/student/testing/psat/reg.html. You can take advantage of our Options PSAT prep in the fall before you write the PSAT. To increase your performance, you can join us at our August SAT/ACT boot camps.
Entering Grade 11, you can begin to do some academic and career planning to determine what university programs you might be interested in and which post-secondary institutions offer them. You should explore college/university choices and refine your list by looking closely at the institutions’ course descriptions and their program admissions requirements.
Start your SAT or ACT prep in January or the beginning of your 2nd semester. You can find out the format of the SAT at www.collegeboard.com and the ACT at www.actstudent.org. Get to know the topics and sections for each test so you can choose the test that suits you best. It is recommended to take both the SAT and ACT. Options Solutions offers preparatory courses for the SAT and ACT. Most students aim to take the SAT in May and/or June and the ACT in April and/or June.
Check that you have got all the graduation requirements and all the core courses for US undergraduate admissions for your desired program major. Retake the SAT and/or ACT early in the fall to improve your scores and sign up to take any SAT Subject Tests as required for the program you intend to apply to. Be sure to send your official scores to the universities that you apply to.