High GPA, Low SAT or ACT
Jan 02, 2022
Even though more than a thousand colleges let you apply to them without submitting your SAT or ACT, you should be aware of a dirty little secret about admissions officers:
They'd PREFER to see standardized test scores!
Because, despite their flaws, the SAT and ACT are still helpful predictors of how well a student will do in college.
Before I continue, understand that I'm not here to defend either the College Board or the ACT. I'm well aware of the biases that affect kids' scores, especially financial means to take test prep or hire expensive tutors.
Side bar: I'm also old enough to remember the Party Line spoken by the College Board for years: that the SAT was so fair that there was zero advantage to studying for it or hiring a tutor!
Then one day they partnered with Khan Academy to provide classes and tutoring.
Anyhoo, one of the most common questions we get is, "Why did my son/daughter do so poorly on his SAT or ACT? He's a great student!"
Obviously there are many factors that can affect a kid's performance. But for today, here's one, blunt and non-politically correct reason why high GPA kids sh-t the bed on the SAT or ACT:
Know any kids with C averages?
I don't either. Lowest I've seen in years is an 82.
Little bit different than when I was in high school. I bet it's the same for you too.
Probably for the same reason that 99% of high schools don't rank their students any more.
(It's not just your high school!)
And why you see multiple valedictorians and salutatorians -- from the same high school, same graduating class -- year after year, throughout the land.
My working theory is that high school administrators got sick of parental over-involvement years ago and threw in the towel. If you don't rank students, all parents can believe that their kids are above average, right?
But consider the plight of your average admissions officer:
If everyone has a 93 average, how can you determine whether an applicant has the chops to do well in college level coursework?
Standardized tests are one of the last, best (not perfect, still!) ways. That's why one of my 2022 predictions is that they're not going away anytime soon.
They're still helpful in college admissions, and, not for nothing, they still generate a TON of fees for the College Board and the ACT.
When in doubt, follow the money.
We offer tutoring and small group classes to help kids CRUSH their tests. Higher scores mean better odds of getting into your "Dream College..."
...and a much better shot at winning fat, juicy merit scholarships!
And for the next two days, we're running a Try Before You Buy promo for our upcoming SAT and ACT prep classes. Here's how it works:
You sign up for the promo
You choose the class you'd like to attend (session #1 of any of our courses on LockwoodTestPrep.com)
After the class, you either:
enroll for the entire course, or
say "Thanks but no thanks" (without obligation or pressure)
It's that simple and there's no catch. Easy peasy!
I cannot make you a better "godfather" offer that you'd be a fool to refuse!
(No credit card is required, in case you're looking for some sort of catch. :)
But you've got to enroll before the deadline, when this offer will suddenly and silently slink way into the night like a Cuomo brother or a CNN producer: