Preparing for the ACT/SAT in the Fall

It seems like summer has only just started, but it won’t be long before school starts up again and the first rounds of the ACT and SAT follow. With an upcoming September ACT date and October SAT date, there are a few reasons why students might want to consider using the summer to prepare for them.

You’re busy during the school year

If a student participates in lots of sports, clubs, or activities on top of an already-busy school day, it can be difficult to squeeze in extra time for preparation. It may be beneficial for that student to spend his or her assumedly quieter summer to prepare for their tests. This has the added benefit of giving the student test scores early in the process, leaving him or her plenty of time to prepare for a second or third attempt if necessary.

You might be eligible for National Merit

If a student is already a high-performer, he or she may be eligible for a National Merit Scholarship based on PSAT scores. It is worthwhile for these students to do as well as they can on their Junior-year PSATs (Sophomore-year PSATs don’t count), as the scholarship can be worth quite a bit of prestige on top of several thousand dollars per year. Any student who thinks they may be in the running for this, or even just wants to try, should consider doing at least some of their SAT/ACT preparation to help prepare for the PSAT

You’re an upcoming senior that wants to give the test another shot

Most college-bound students need to have their scores in by the end of the fall, so the September ACT and October SAT are popular testing times for seniors that want to try boosting their scores. The summer, then, is an excellent time for them to prepare for their tests, as they are very likely to be motivated by their impending high school graduation to work as hard as they can.

No matter your reason, take advantage of the time you have in the summer, even if you aren’t taking a test in the fall. It’s a great time to review the material you have learned throughout the year or preview material coming up next year.

Mike Constanza is the Director of Learning and Technology for Silver Oak Learning K-12. His expertise is primarily in reading, writing, SAT and ACT prep.