Before deciding on which test is the most suitable for your students, it’s worth looking at each one in more detail, including:
- The subjects being tested
- The time allocated for each test
- The competencies that candidates would need to demonstrate.
The SAT stands for Scholastic Aptitude Test, and was taken by as many as 2.1 million students in 2018. If your students are gearing up for the SAT, here are some of the key facts and figures:
Test Structure: The SAT contains four main sections: Reading; Writing and Language; Math; and the Essay component (this section is optional). The Math section is split into two parts – one with a calculator, the other without.
Length: The SAT is 3 hours without the Essay component, or 3 hours and 55 minutes with the Essay component.
Test Timings: 65 mins for Reading, 35 mins for Writing & Language, 25 mins for Math (no Calculator), 55 mins for Math (Calculator), 55 mins for the optional Essay component.
Scoring: The Reading/Writing section and the Math section each have a total score of 800. Together they make up a combined total of 1600.
ACT stands for American College Testing, and 1.9 million students took the ACT in 2018. Here’s the lowdown on what’s involved:
Test Structure: The ACT has five total sections: English; Math; Reading; Science; and Writing. Again, the Writing section is optional.
Length: The ACT is 2 hours 55 minutes if a student doesn’t take the Writing Section; if a student does opt for the Writing section, then the ACT comes to 3 hours 35 minutes.
Test Timings: 45 mins for English, 60 mins for Math, 35 mins for Reading, 35 mins for Science and 40 mins if your students decide to take the optional Writing component.
Scoring: Each section of the ACT uses a score between 1 and 36. A student’s total score is the average of their four section scores. The optional Writing section does not count towards the final score.