SAT / ACT Prep Online Guides and Tips

Rebecca Safier

Rebecca graduated with her Master's in Adolescent Counseling from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. She has years of teaching and college counseling experience and is passionate about helping students achieve their goals and improve their well-being. She graduated magna cum laude from Tufts University and scored in the 99th percentile on the SAT.

Recent Posts

How Long Does It Take to Get ACT Scores Back?

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Jan 9, 2020 5:00:00 PM

After you take the ACT, the anticipation isn't over! Now, you have to wait to get your scores. While the scores aren't available immediately, you don't actually have to wait too long to see your scores or have them sent to colleges.

This guide will go over when you can expect to see your ACT scores for each test date, as well as the differences in score release dates for students who took the ACT with Writing.

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How Long Does It Take to Get SAT Scores Back?

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Jan 5, 2020 5:00:00 PM

SAT General Info

Don't you wish you could find out how you scored on the SAT right after you finish taking the test? Or maybe you'd like to forget all about it and pretend it never happened (better luck next time)!

Either way, your wait time for your SAT scores will be the same: somewhere between two and six weeks. This article fills you in on all the details of SAT score reporting and offers some advice for what to do once you get your scores.

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Choose Your SAT / ACT Test Dates: When's a Good Time for You?

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Jan 5, 2020 1:00:00 PM

SAT Strategies, ACT Strategies

"I have no idea what to expect" is not a sentence you want running through your mind on your way to take the SAT or ACT. If you take control of your test prep and schedule, then you shouldn't have any surprises on test day.

Besides studying, part of your preparation should be strategically planning out your SAT/ACT test dates. Instead of closing your eyes and pointing randomly at a calendar, you can ask yourself some key questions to figure out when the best SAT/ACT test dates are for you.

The first question that every student should ask herself, of course, is, When are my college deadlines?

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When Do SAT Subject Test Scores Come Out?

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Dec 29, 2019 12:00:00 PM

SAT Subject Tests

After you take the SAT Subject Tests, you probably want to find out your results right away. You'll have to be a little patient, though, as you might need to wait between two and six weeks to get your SAT Subject Test scores.

We've compiled the exact score delivery dates below. We also offer tips on how to track down your scores and what to do after you get them. Read on to find out just when you'll get your SAT Subject Test scores.

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What's a Good PSAT Score for a Sophomore?

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Dec 22, 2019 4:30:00 PM

SAT/ACT Score Target, PSAT Info and Strategies

You wouldn't go for your driver's license test before ever getting behind the wheel, right? In reality, you'd practice your three-point turns and parallel parking first so you're ready and know what to expect when the real test comes.

Just as you suspected, this scenario's an analogy for the PSAT. Rather than sitting for it junior year without a practice run, you can improve your performance if you've already taken it in 10th grade. Taking the PSAT as a sophomore is a great, low-pressure way to familiarize yourself with the test, gauge your level, and figure out where you need to improve.

With this in mind, we'll look at what PSAT scores are good for sophomores and how to improve them even more for junior year. But first, let's consider how the PSAT is scored.

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New 2019 PSAT Percentiles and Selection Index

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Dec 22, 2019 4:00:00 PM

PSAT Info and Strategies

Your PSAT score report will show you a myriad of scores, including your total score, section scores, subscores, percentiles, and Selection Index (SI). This guide will focus on the last two pieces of data: your PSAT score percentiles and Selection Index.

Because it's important to understand how the other scores in your report relate to your PSAT percentiles and Selection Index, we'll start with a quick review of terms. If you're one of many students or parents looking for directions out of the complex maze that is the PSAT score report, read on to have the path illuminated!

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What's a Good PSAT Score for a Junior?

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Dec 22, 2019 4:00:00 PM

PSAT Info and Strategies

The PSAT is an important test on the road to college. Your scores predict how you'll do on the SAT. Plus, top scorers can earn distinctions and scholarships from the National Merit Scholarship Corporation.

So how do you know whether your PSAT scores are good? While what counts as a good score varies depending on your personal goals, we can give a more objective answer to this question by considering PSAT score percentiles. But first, let's review how the PSAT is scored.

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SAT Subject Test Dates 2020: When Should You Take Them?

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Dec 22, 2019 11:13:00 AM

SAT Subject Tests

When are you planning to take the SAT Subject Tests? If you answered, "I don't know," you're not alone! It's hard to know when the best time is to fit in the Subject Tests with the general SAT, your schoolwork, and everything else you've got going on.

Let's take a look at when the SAT Subject Tests are offered in 2020 and when the best dates are for you to take them. As long as you have a plan, you'll be able to balance these tests with all the other things you're up to in your busy life.

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What's a Good PSAT Score for a Freshman?

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Dec 22, 2019 10:26:00 AM

PSAT Info and Strategies

If you're gearing up for a high PSAT score your junior year, then you might choose to take the PSAT as a freshman for practice. Taking the PSAT in 9th grade will help you identify your current scoring level and figure out how you can improve for the future.

As a freshman, you can choose between two tests: the PSAT/NMSQT that 11th graders take or the PSAT 8/9, a version of the test specifically geared toward 8th and 9th graders.

These two tests have comparable but slightly different score ranges. This article will go over the scoring and percentiles of both so you can know what would make a good PSAT/NMSQT or PSAT 8/9 score as a freshman.

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What Colleges Should I Apply To? Making a College List

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Dec 22, 2019 9:00:00 AM

College Admissions

With more than 5,000 colleges to choose from across the country, you might be asking yourself, "What colleges should I apply to?" How do you narrow thousands of schools down to just 10? The best way to streamline your college list is to divide it roughly equally between safety schools, match schools, and reach schools.

This guide will go over exactly what these terms mean and how to choose the best schools for you. Before taking you through the process step by step, though, let's review the research process as a whole.

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Best SAT Math Prep Books (2020): Expert Reviews

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Dec 8, 2019 12:00:00 PM

SAT General Info

While there are many different SAT prep books, they all have one thing in common: they all claim to be the best. How can you figure out which one will actually help you succeed on the SAT?

This guide will give you my recommendations for the best prep books for the Math section of the SAT. Some of these books are best for strategies and thinking through the problems, while others are best for practice problems. A few are geared toward top scorers, while some will help you improve a low score fast.

Before delving into the list, I have to make one disclaimer:

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The New PSAT, Redesigned in 2015: Complete Guide

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Nov 10, 2019 10:00:00 PM

PSAT Info and Strategies, New SAT

If you're a high school student planning on taking the PSAT, you'll be taking the redesigned PSAT. This new version of the test started in October 2015 was administered to all students across the country.

We’ll let you know all about the PSAT format, scoring, and content and what you need to know to be prepared. Not only is the 2015 PSAT an important step in prepping for the SAT, but it also qualifies you for National Merit distinctions and scholarships.

Let’s dive into the changes in format, scoring, and content being made to the redesigned PSAT and what these changes mean for your test prep.

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The Complete List of Colleges That Require Interviews

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Nov 10, 2019 7:00:00 PM

College Admissions

Many colleges ask you to interview with an alum or admissions officer as part of the application process. This article has the full list of schools that require, recommend, or offer interviews, and it will give you some pointers on how to figure out your college's interview policy.

To start off, let's review the point of the college interview. Is your interviewer evaluating you, or is the meeting simply a chance for you to learn more about the school?

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Colleges With Late Application Deadlines: Complete List

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Nov 10, 2019 8:30:00 AM

College Admissions

If you’re wondering whether there are any colleges with late application deadlines, you’re in luck! Lots of colleges have application deadlines in February or later, and many more keep rolling admissions open until all their spots have been filled.

Here, we give you a full list of colleges with late application deadlines. But before diving into this list, let’s consider an important question: what exactly is considered a normal deadline?

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NCAA ACT Scores: What You Need to Qualify

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Oct 27, 2019 9:30:00 PM

SAT/ACT Score Target

If you're a student athlete who wants to play in NCAA Division I or Division II sports in college, then this article is for you! We'll review NCAA's eligibility criteria for your GPA and ACT score, which NCAA compares using a sliding scale. More importantly, we'll give you the tips and strategies you need to achieve the NCAA ACT scores required for passing the clearinghouse.

First, let's quickly review how your grade point average, or GPA, is determined.

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