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

PSAT Practice Tests (Updated)

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Posted by Rebecca Safier | Sep 20, 2021 12:00:00 PM

PSAT Info and Strategies

If you're looking for PSAT practice materials, you've come to the right place. This guide contains all free PSAT materials, which you can download—including 10 PSAT practice test PDFs.

Unfortunately, since the PSAT's 2015 makeover, the College Board hasn't released a ton of practice tests. Luckily, though, you can still use old PSAT practice tests effectively to prepare. Before getting to the practice questions, we'll go over some of the changes made to the PSAT in 2015. If you care about your PSAT score, read carefully so you don't waste your time studying the wrong things!

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Predicted National Merit Scholarship Cutoffs for 2021 and 2022 (Updated)

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Posted by Rebecca Safier | Sep 19, 2021 8:30:00 AM

PSAT Info and Strategies

What score do you need on the PSAT to qualify for National Merit distinction? The answer to this question depends on where you live. To achieve National Merit recognition, you need to match or exceed the cutoff score in your home state.

We’ve compiled the National Merit Semifinalist state cutoffs based on the most recent data from the fall of 2020. Before checking out the qualifying scores, let’s discuss how the National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC) determines who is named Commended Student or Semifinalist.

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Early Decision Deadlines for Every College With ED

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Posted by Rebecca Safier | Sep 10, 2021 6:00:00 PM

College Admissions, College Info

If you're applying early decision, then you've already accomplished something pretty rare in the college application process—you know exactly where you want to go to college!

This guide goes over your timeline for applying early decision and provides a comprehensive list of deadlines for all early decision schools. Read on to learn everything you will need to know about applying early decision to your dream school.

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Important College Application Deadlines You Can't Miss

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Posted by Rebecca Safier | Sep 10, 2021 12:00:00 PM

College Admissions

Timing is everything. Nowhere is this saying more true than in the college application process. From taking the SAT to writing your personal essay to submitting your Common App, the process takes months, if not years, to complete.

So when do you need to finish gathering all your application materials and submit them to your colleges? That all depends on your deadlines. This guide will go over the different options for college application deadlines, plus step-by-step instructions on how to keep track of them all.

First off, what are the different options for applying?

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When To Apply For College: Complete Timeline

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Posted by Rebecca Safier | Sep 8, 2021 5:30:00 PM

College Admissions

Many students start college in the fall after they graduate high school, but their planning and applying starts years before. Application deadlines may be in the fall or winter of senior year, and completing each step on the path to college might start as early as freshman year.

This article answers all your questions about when to apply for college: when do you complete each step of the process, and when are your college deadlines? After reading this, you'll know exactly when to apply to college and what steps are needed.

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International Students and the SAT/ACT: Complete Guide

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Posted by Rebecca Safier | Sep 5, 2021 3:00:00 PM

SAT versus ACT, College Admissions

Are you an international student aiming to attend college in the United States? Colleges are looking for students with language skills and global competencies more than ever, so you already have several strong assets to draw on in your college applications.

One requirement for your applications to most universities is the SAT or ACT. Let's go over the information you need to know about deciding between the SAT and ACT, registering for the tests, and preparing to achieve a high score.

But first, why are the SAT and ACT important for going to college in the US?

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What Is Rolling Admission? When Do You Apply?

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Posted by Rebecca Safier | Sep 4, 2021 2:00:00 PM

College Admissions

Who needs deadlines? Colleges with rolling admissions invite you to submit your application within a general time frame, usually ranging from the fall to the spring.

While these schools don't have a set deadline, your timeline for applying still matters. This guide will explore the rolling admission policy and how it affects your college planning. First, what is this application option all about?

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The Complete List of Colleges That Require Interviews

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Posted by Rebecca Safier | Sep 1, 2021 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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Early Decision Schools: Complete List of ED Colleges

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Posted by Rebecca Safier | Sep 1, 2021 5:30:00 PM

College Admissions, College Info

Did you know that early decision isn't necessarily early? "Binding decision" might be a better name for it, since some schools now offer "early" decision deadlines in January as well as in November.

Either way, applying early decision is a big commitment. If you apply this way, you should be totally sure you want to attend that school. Let's review the pros and cons of early decision and look at all the schools that currently offer early decision admission.

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Colleges That Superscore ACT: Complete List

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Posted by Rebecca Safier | Sep 1, 2021 11:00:00 AM

ACT General Info, College Admissions

Are you taking the ACT? Before registering, you should know how admissions officers look at your scores. Do they consider Math, Science, Reading, and English individually, or do they care more about the composite score?

You might be relieved to hear that many colleges "superscore" your ACT scores by taking the best subscores across all your test dates and creating the strongest possible composite score. Read on for the full list of colleges that superscore the ACT, followed by some tips on how you can use this policy to your advantage.

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Early Action Deadlines for Every College With EA

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Posted by Rebecca Safier | Aug 29, 2021 6:30:00 PM

College Admissions

If you're in the midst of college application season, then you know it's time to take action. For some of you, that might be early action, which pushes your deadlines up a couple months.

This guide has the complete list of colleges that offer early action, along with advice on the best way to prepare for an early deadline. Before getting to the list, though, let's go over the ins and outs of the early action admission plan.

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Early Action Schools: Complete List of EA Colleges

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Posted by Rebecca Safier | Aug 29, 2021 5:00:00 PM

College Admissions, College Info

Would you like to know where you'll be going to college as soon as possible? If you apply early action, then you might have your plans all set by winter break of your senior year. That's a big leap forward compared with waiting for regular notifications in March or April!

A large number of schools offer an early action deadline in addition to a regular decision deadline. This guide will go over what you need to know about applying early action and give you a comprehensive list of all the schools that offer it. To start, how does early action work?

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Complete List: BA/MD and BS/MD Programs in the US

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Posted by Rebecca Safier | Aug 15, 2021 9:00:00 PM

College Admissions

Do you dream of becoming a doctor? If you're set on going to medical school, then a combined BS/MD or BA/MD program might be for you. The majority of these combined programs allow motivated high school students to go right from undergraduate to medical school without having to go through another application process.

While there aren't a ton of spots available in combined programs, there are schools throughout the country that offer them. Before we look at those, however, let's review what BA/MD and BS/MD programs entail, as well as the pros and cons for high school and young undergraduate applicants.

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Complete List: Colleges With Rolling Admissions

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Posted by Rebecca Safier | Aug 15, 2021 2:30:00 PM

College Admissions

Deadlines are stressful—so why not get rid of them? Well, some colleges do just that. Rather than having a fixed application deadline, these schools open up a period of time for you to submit your application.

Rolling admission doesn't mean you won't have any timeline, though. This guide will go over what rolling admission means as you apply to college and also provide you with a complete list of colleges with rolling admissions.

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SAT and TOEFL: What You Need to Know About Each Test

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Posted by Rebecca Safier | Aug 8, 2021 8:00:00 PM

SAT General Info, College Admissions

Is English your second (or third or fourth) language? If it's anything but your first, then you may have to take the TOEFL to get into university in the United States. The TOEFL is an English language test that shows you have the language skills to succeed in college.

As another admissions test, the TOEFL shares some similarities with the more ubiquitous SAT. This guide will compare the two tests, as well as give you some tips for preparing for both. If you're a non-native English speaker planning to apply to a U.S. college, then read on to learn the ins and outs of your testing requirements.

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