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ACT Vs SAT?

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Do you want to study abroad? Are you hoping to secure a significant scholarship or study grant? Studying overseas requires a lot of planning and preparation which can be a complex, time-consuming and expensive undertaking. StudyOverseasNow.com are overseas education consultants that specialize in providing expert advice throughout the consultation and application process. We help students secure the best scholarships at the highest ranked universities. Book a FREE Consultation with an experienced education & career counsellor to find out what overseas study options are available. 

Primarily these tests are used for US and Canadian based colleges and universities. However, universities from other countries may accept the ACT and SAT based on their {individual} admissions policy. The purpose of the examination is to test High School students fairly and equally. The SAT remains a more popular choice for international students. However, the ACT may be preferable if the student has attributes more inclined to this test. The basic outline for each test can be found below:

  ACT SAT
Number of Question 215 154
Length of Assessment 3 hours 35 minutes 3 hours 15 minutes
Scoring Scale 1-36 400-1600
Sections Math (Calculator and Non-Calculator), Reading and Writing Math, Reading, Writing, and Optional Essay
Test Dates Four times per year – March, May, October, and December Six times per year – February, April, June, July, September, and October

Students completing the SAT will receive a score between 400 and 1600, whereas the ACT provides each student a grade between 1-36. The SAT contains a wider range of possible scores; however, all universities possess a simple conversion tool to establish the equivalent score between both tests.  The SAT and ACT verbal sections {Reading, Writing and English} account for half the exam score, rather than two-thirds of the total score in previous years.

A difference in the number of questions can be observed with the SAT requiring 154 questions to be taken whilst the ACT requires 215. The difference in the number of questions will be reflected by the time provided for each section.

The SAT often requires additional writing and problem solving skills when comparisons are made to the ACT. Both tests cover writing, reading and maths; however, the ACT includes a science section. In contrast the SAT requires students to complete an additional non-calculator maths section and will include a basic formula page to assist. Typically, science students will complete the ACT and more maths focussed students will complete the SAT.

The SAT focusses more on mathematics. The SAT maths test is divided into one calculator and one non-calculator section. Both maths test will contribute to 50% of the final SAT score. Conversely the ACT only has one mathematics section and accounts for 25% of the overall score.

  Reading {25%} Reading {75%} Math {25%} Math {75%}
Cornell University 690 760 700 790
Harvard University 730 790 730 800
Princeton University 710 780 720 790
Yale University 730 780 730 800
Alabama University 380 470 370 440
UCLA 620 710 600 740
Clemson University 620 690 600 700
Florida University 620 710 620 690
Alabama University 380 470 370 440

Students are required to book online and pay their registration fee. Students will have to find their local SAT or ACT test centre and select their preferred date / time.

Visit the following website, College Board website. StudyOveerseasNow.com advises students to start the process early. This allows students to take multiple tests if required and build upon the scores they receive. Make sure not to miss any examination deadlines.

Visit the following website, ACT website. For international students, test dates are generally in September, October, December, February, April, June, and July.

Most students start preparing for the exam a year or more in advance. StudyOverseasNow.com suggests students set aside at least 6-8 months of intensive study to pass the test. If students are targeting an Ivy league school or equivalent hiring a SAT or ACT tutor may prove beneficial. These examinations are more challenging if English is not the students primary language.  

Students are required to register for the SAT or ACT test at least one month prior to the test date. Students should expect to wait up to 1-month to receive their results. Students should know what university they are applying to and the range of scores required prior to sitting the test.

StudyOverseasNow.com advises all students who require an ACT or SAT to take multiple practice tests to discover what test is more suited to them. 

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I hope you found the information in our blog useful. StudyOverseasNow.com are overseas education consultants that specialize in providing expert advice throughout the consultation and application process. If you would like to study abroad and hope to secure a significant scholarship or study grant Book a FREE Consultation with an experienced education & career counsellor to find out what overseas study options are available. We look forward to helping you start your journey to a brighter future!

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