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  • Writer's pictureAlison Merzel


Updated: May 8

ACT or SAT – Does it matter which one I take?

Back when I was applying to college, it seemed that certain schools preferred one test over the other. Today, admissions officers indicate that they have no preference over which standardized test students submit – all colleges and universities accept both tests. My best advice is to take whichever test will enable you to deliver the best score. If you are more comfortable with one over the other, that is your test.

How do you know which one to try? Take practice tests of each. There are many free resources available online for test preparation and practice tests including:

ACT Academy

Khan Academy/College Board (SAT)

Princeton Review (ACT)

Princeton Review (SAT)

Magoosh (ACT)

Magoosh (SAT)

Kaplan (ACT)

Kaplan (SAT)

PowerScore (SAT AND ACT)

If you do take a practice test online, set yourself up in a quiet environment with no distractions and time yourself. This will give you the best proxy for how you will do on the real test day and provide you with some idea of how much work you will have to do to prepare for the actual test. Some people surprise themselves and are better standardized test takers than they would expect. The more exposure you have to the different test sections, the more familiar and comfortable you will feel on test day.

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