I get this question almost every time I send an email about our SAT and ACT tutoring options, and yesterday was no exception. The question:
"Do you even need to submit your SAT or ACT anymore?
The answer, my friend, is blowin' herein...
There is a difference between APPLYING test-optional, and GETTING IN test-optional.
Colleges are a little cute about this. They don't readily release their stats on the number of admitted students who submitted their scores.
They do, however, brag about how many students with great or perfect scores they rejected, like Stanford did last year.
How do you decide whether to submit your scores? Here are my thoughts and hunches:
It's anyone's guess just "how" diverse colleges will be in 2024-25. My gut feeling is that admissions officers will come up with creative ways to continue to recruit underrepresented minorities and ethnicities, and things won't look that much different.
How will they do this, without getting sued?
My best guess is by using test-optional policies to admit under-resourced students who don't have the ability to hire tutoring. This way, a student with superior scores but who isn't economically challenged can't claim that students with lower scores took his spot and that violates rules, regulations, the Constitution and scripture.
My next guess is that, if a student is not low income or under-resourced, they will not benefit from test-optional the way things worked last year and in previous admissions cycles. Again, this is a guess but it stands to reason.
This doesn't change any of the advice I have given my 1:1 clients for years: get your SAT or ACT as high as humanly possible, then...
We normally start our students off with a diagnostic test, so we can assess the student’s strengths and weaknesses and recommend one test over the other. About half of the students show a propensity for one test over the other, while the other half does equally well on both the SAT and ACT. For the majority of students, it’s best to choose a single test, focus all of their energy into that test, and stick with that test.
There are several benefits to focusing on a single test. It is better to focus on a single test and become an absolute expert in it. Mastering one test alone is far easier than splitting your attention between two different exams, with different pacing, different question types, and even different topics! It is also a lot less stressful to study for a single test.
While it can be very rewarding, studying for the SAT or ACT is intensive, exhausting, and time consuming. Adding a second test into...