SAT / ACT Prep Online Guides and Tips

Ashley Robinson

Ashley Sufflé Robinson has a Ph.D. in 19th Century English Literature. As a content writer for PrepScholar, Ashley is passionate about giving college-bound students the in-depth information they need to get into the school of their dreams.

Recent Posts

Digital SAT vs ACT: Which Should You Take?

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Posted by Ashley Robinson | Sep 18, 2023 9:00:00 AM

SAT versus ACT

Choosing whether to take the SAT or ACT for college admissions has always been tough. But now that the SAT is switching over to a digital format, there’s even more to consider! 

In this article, we’ll give you the info you need to choose the best college entrance exam option for you. We’ll: 

  • Explain how the transition to the digital SAT, or DSAT, impacts your decision-making
  • Provide a complete comparison between the DSAT and the ACT (nifty chart included!)
  • List the reasons you might prefer the ACT over the DSAT, or visa versa 
  • Give you a quick, five question quiz to help you decide whether the DSAT or ACT is right for you

Are you ready? Let’s dive in!

Note: ACT, Inc. is running a small pilot in December to test out a digital version of their test, so some of this is subject to change and will be updated as we know more. The ACT is currently set to be offered in both paper and online versions but otherwise stay the same.

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The Educator's Guide to the Digital SAT

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Posted by Ashley Robinson | Sep 11, 2023 9:00:00 AM

SAT General Info

The SAT suite of exams is officially switching from a paper-and-pencil format to a new, digital format in 2024. That means big changes are in store for educators and students. 

In this article, we’ll answer your questions about the digital SAT so you’ll know what to expect from the new format. We’ll cover:

  • A complete timeline for when the new digital SAT and PSAT will be implemented in schools
  • How the digital SAT and PSAT will be different in terms of content and format
  • How the digital exams will be scored, and how it’ll be different from the paper versions
  • Materials students will need to take the digital SAT and PSAT

Let’s get started!

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The Best UC Schools, Ranked By Experts

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Posted by Ashley Robinson | Aug 21, 2023 12:15:00 PM

College Admissions

Choosing a college in California can be tough, especially since there are so many great options available. One of the best school systems to choose from is the University of California.

In this article, we’ll provide a complete, ranked list of the best UC schools, give you information about each. We’ll list the campuses, give you important stats like how much each costs…and so much more!

That way, you can pick the UC school that’s best for you. Let’s get started!

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USC vs UCLA: Which Is Right For You?

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Posted by Ashley Robinson | Jul 10, 2023 9:30:00 AM

College Info

If you have your sights set on Los Angeles for college, the University of Southern California and the University of California Los Angeles are two great options to choose from. But when it comes to USC vs UCLA…what are the differences and which is better?

We’re going to break down both of these schools and what they have to offer, including campus sizes, the majors they offer, and how much tuition costs. Information is power, and once you have all the fact, you can make the best decision for you.  

Ready? Let’s get started. 

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What Is Affirmative Action in College Admissions?

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Posted by Ashley Robinson | Jun 30, 2023 10:00:00 AM

College Admissions, College Info

Affirmative action is one of the most hotly debated topics in college admissions today. With the 2023 from the Supreme Court that colleges and universities can no longer use their full affirmative action policies in admissions decisions, things are about to change in higher education.

If you’re applying to college and wondering what the new Supreme Court affirmative action decision is all about, we’ve got you covered. In this article, we’ll answer the question, “What is affirmative action in college admissions?” and go over real examples of affirmative action in education policies and how colleges have used them historically.  

We’ll also explain how the upcoming changes to affirmative action in public and private schools might affect incoming students, and how to put together stellar college applications no matter what.  

So let’s get started.

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How Many Questions Are on the ACT?

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Posted by Ashley Robinson | Jun 26, 2023 9:00:00 AM

ACT General Info

If you’re considering taking the ACT or if you’ve already started prepping for it, you’re likely wondering how many questions you’ll face come test day. 

We know, we know—you probably have questions like, “how many questions are on the ACT in general?” and, “how many Math questions are on the ACT?” as well as how many can you expect to see on the English and Reading sections. 

We’re going to break it all down for you!

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Is Harvard Test Optional? Testing Policies for Top Colleges

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Posted by Ashley Robinson | May 15, 2023 10:00:00 AM

College Admissions

If you want to get accepted to any college in the U.S., you need to know its admissions requirements. That includes whether you’ll have to submit SAT or ACT scores! Many colleges have adopted test optional admissions policies over the past several years…but what about top schools? Is Harvard test optional? Are Ivy League schools test optional?

We know all the changes can be confusing, but we’re here to help. In this article, we’ll walk you through Harvard’s current testing policies and the testing policies at top 25 universities. We’ll also explain whether test scores still matter at test optional schools and how to make decisions about standardized testing. 

There’s a lot to cover, so let’s dive in. 

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When Do Digital SAT Scores Come Out?

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Posted by Ashley Robinson | May 9, 2023 9:00:00 AM

SAT Logistics, SAT General Info

Big changes are coming to the SAT! In addition to some important changes being made to the test format and content, there’ll also be changes to when and how you get your SAT scores back. We know, we know…this is probably a little stressful for you if you’re getting ready to take the SAT or if you’ve already taken it and you’re waiting on your scores. Hang in there—we’re here to help!

One of the most important questions you’re probably wondering is: when do Digital SAT scores come out?

In this guide, we’ll tell you everything you need to know about the switch to the Digital SAT and answer this and all the great questions you have about it, including:

  • When will the SAT go digital?
  • How are Digital SAT scores different from paper-and-pencil SAT scores?
  • When will Digital SAT scores be released?
  • What to do if you haven’t gotten your Digital SAT scores back
  • What to do after you receive your Digital SAT scores

Let’s dig in. 

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Can You Use ChatGPT for Your College Essay?

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Posted by Ashley Robinson | May 3, 2023 9:00:00 AM

College Admissions, College Essays

ChatGPT has become a popular topic of conversation since its official launch in November 2022. The artificial intelligence (AI) chatbot can be used for all sorts of things, like having conversations, answering questions, and even crafting complete pieces of writing.

If you’re applying for college, you might be wondering about ChatGPT college admissions’ potential.  Should you use a ChatGPT college essay in your application

By the time you finish reading this article, you’ll know much more about ChatGPT, including how students can use it responsibly and if it’s a good idea to use ChatGPT on college essays. We’ll answer all your questions, like:

  • What is ChatGPT and why are schools talking about it?
  • What are the good and bad aspects of ChatGPT?
  • Should you use ChatGPT for college essays and applications?
  • Can colleges detect ChatGPT?
  • Are there other tools and strategies that students can use, instead?

We’ve got a lot to cover, so let’s get started!

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The Ultimate Digital SAT Study Guide: Tips, Plans, and Practice

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Posted by Ashley Robinson | May 1, 2023 12:00:00 PM

SAT Strategies, SAT General Info

Starting in Spring 2024, every student who takes the SAT will take a new, digital version of the exam. The digital SAT will be different from the paper version…which means your SAT prep routine will be a little different too!

With this big change coming up, how should you handle digital SAT prep? What’s the best way to study for the digital SAT? 

In this article, we’ll answer all of your questions about how to prep for the digital SAT, including: 

  • When the SAT goes digital, and how you’ll take the digital SAT
  • How to make a study plan for the digital SAT
  • Sample digital SAT study plans
  • List of practice resources for the digital SAT

Let’s get started!

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Is the PSAT on Paper or Computer for 2023?

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Posted by Ashley Robinson | Apr 11, 2023 6:00:00 PM

PSAT Info and Strategies

If you’ve heard the news that the SAT is transitioning to a totally digital format by 2024, you might be wondering how that will affect other exams, like the PSAT. Is the PSAT on paper or computer these days? Will the PSAT format change this year? 

In 2023, the PSAT format will change over from a paper exam to a fully digital test. To help you get a handle on what those changes mean for you, we’ll cover the following in this article: 

  • How the PSAT format will change from paper to digital
  • Five ways that the digital PSAT will be different from the paper exam
  • Three tips for preparing for the new digital PSAT

Let’s get started!

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The Best Living Environment Regents Review Guide 2023

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Posted by Ashley Robinson | Apr 4, 2023 4:00:00 PM

General Education

Some states in the U.S. require students to take and pass a standardized test in order to graduate from high school with a diploma. If you live in the state of New York, you'll have to take and pass a standardized test called the Regents Exam in order to earn your high school diploma.

There are several individual Regents Exams, each covering a different subject area. If you want to get a high school diploma in the state of New York (called a Regents Diploma), you'll have to take and pass at least one science Regents exam.

The Living Environment Regents Exam is one of four science exams offered, and we're here to help you learn everything you need to know to help you decide if taking the Living Environment Regents exam is the best choice for you.

In our full guide to this exam, we'll cover the following:

  • What the Living Environment Regents Exam is
  • Who should take the Living Environment Regents Exam
  • Important information about the exam for quick reference
  • The format of the exam
  • Sample questions from the exam
  • The topics and subtopics covered by the exam sections

There's a lot to cover here, so let's get going!


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How to Use the Bluebook SAT App: Complete Guide

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Posted by Ashley Robinson | Mar 28, 2023 4:00:00 PM

SAT Logistics, SAT General Info


Every student who takes the SAT will access the exam using a digital app called Bluebook starting in 2024. But what is the Bluebook app? How do you set it up and how does it work? 

We’ll answer all of these questions and more to help you learn the ins and outs of using Bluebook before exam day. As a bonus, we’ll also walk you through what’s included in the Bluebook app, the SAT prep materials provided through Bluebook, and give you three tips for practicing for the digital SAT. 

So, let’s get started!

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What Is SAT Adaptive Testing? How Does It Work?

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Posted by Ashley Robinson | Mar 16, 2023 3:00:00 PM

SAT General Info



The College Board has released a new, digital SAT. The College Board has said that one of the reasons it developed the digital SAT was to introduce adaptive testing. Adaptive testing allows exams to change in real time based on how well, or how poorly, a student is performing. 

If adaptive testing is unfamiliar to you, don’t panic! We’re here to walk you through the ins and outs of adaptive testing so you’ll be fully prepared for the digital SAT. In this guide, we’ll cover: 

  • What the SAT adaptive test is
  • How adaptive testing works
  • How to create a test prep strategy for SAT adaptive testing
  • Three tips for preparing for adaptive testing

Let’s dive in!

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Digital SAT Devices: What Can You Use? Do You Need Your Own?

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Posted by Ashley Robinson | Mar 8, 2023 11:00:00 AM

SAT General Info


With the digital SAT, students will take the exam in a totally new format. The days of the pencil-and-paper SAT booklet are gone…which means you probably have some questions! 

You know, like…how does the digital SAT work? 

Spoiler alert: one of the biggest changes about the digital SAT is that you’ll have to take in on some kind of digital device. But what are the digital SAT approved devices? And how can you access them if you don’t already have one? 

In this guide, we’ll explain how taking the digital SAT works to help you get ready for the new format. We’ll cover: 

  • How the digital SAT works
  • How you’ll take the digital SAT, including answering the question, “What devices can I use on the SAT?”
  • What to do if you don’t have an approved device
  • What happens if you have technical issues during the exam 

Are you ready? Let’s get started!

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