COVID-19 led to the cancellations of SAT dates in March, May, and June 2020. Unfortunately, this throws a wrench in many high school students' plans, especially if they're applying for college in the near future!
As affected students work to reschedule their tests, the College Board expects there to be a much higher demand for fall testing opportunities. That's why the College Board added a September SAT date in the fall 2020.
In this article, we'll tell you everything we know about the September 26, 2020 SAT date as of right now. Keep in mind that information about the exam is still being released, so be sure to check back for updates.
UPDATE: No Future September SATs Planned
In 2020, as a response to spring and summer SAT cancellations due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the College Board added a new SAT date for September 2020. There hadn't previously been a September SAT and, at the time, it was unclear if the College Board would keep the September SAT for future years. However, it has now been announced that the September SAT was only a temporary change for 2020, and there are no plans for future September SATs.
But, even though you can no longer take the SAT in September, there are still plenty of other SAT options. The SAT is offered seven times a year, including multiple times in the fall, so you'll be able to find a date that works for you. Check out all your options in our guide to SAT test dates.
Why Is There a New September 2020 SAT Date?
The College Board has decided to schedule a new SAT administration date for Saturday, September 26, 2020 to accommodate what is anticipated to be a high-volume of testing needs this fall. SAT dates in March, May, and June 2020 have been cancelled due to the COVID-19 global pandemic, so many students will need testing opportunities this fall to make up for their missed exam dates.
This is definitely a change from normal policy: in normal years, there isn't a September testing date at all! It's also worth noting that the September 2020 SAT testing date is just one test date on the Fall 2020 SAT testing schedule. You can find all the Fall 2020 SAT testing dates here.
Who Is Eligible To Take the September SAT?
While anyone is allowed to take the September SAT, the College Board has stated that they're going to prioritize registration for certain students.
So what does that mean, exactly?
If you're registered for the June SAT date (that's been cancelled) or if you're a high school senior who hasn't taken the SAT at all, you'll be given early access to sign up for the August, September, and October testing dates.
If you don't fit into those categories, don't worry: the College Board is planning on increasing testing capacities so more students can take the SAT in the fall. So even if you don't fall into one of the two special categories we listed above, there's still a decent chance that you'll be able to register for the September SAT.
When Can I Register for the September SAT?
At the present time, online registrationfor the September 26 SAT date will open in late May. The College Board states that they will contact students directly during the week of May 26 to provide an exact date that SAT registration will open for this new testing date.
Also keep in mind that priority access will be given to students who were registered for the June SAT and high school seniors who haven't taken the SAT yet. If you fit into one of those categories, keep a close eye on your email! You'll want to take advantage of the early registration window as soon as you can.
Will the September SAT Be an In-Person or Online Exam?
As long as the situation is considered safe, the September SAT date is currently set to be administered in-person. Accommodations are in the works to provide more seats than normal for this testing date so that students who have had their SAT dates cancelled and those who originally planned to take the SAT this fall will have the opportunity to take the exam in September. This may mean that there are extra testing locations provided in your area for this testing date.
Having said that, the College Board is putting together an online testing option just in case COVID-19 makes it unsafe to take in-person tests in the fall. At this point, the College Board hasn't released any specific details about how this would work (or what criteria they'll use to decide whether testing will move online). Be sure to check the College Board's website for the most up-to-date information about COVID-19 testing changes.
Some of the SAT test dates in 2020 were cancelled due to COVID-19. If you were affected by a test cancellation, you might qualify for early registration!
How Do I Register for the September 2020 SAT If My Previous Test Date Was Cancelled?
It looks like the College Board is offering early registration access to those students who were already registered for a cancelled SAT date in June 2020. These students will be eligible for early registration access for August, September, and October 2020 SAT dates.
As of right now, the College Board hasn't released specifics on how early registration will work. However, they have said they'll provide more information about early access during May 2020. This information should be sent to your email address, so be sure to check it regularly.
Will I Have To Pay a Fee to Register for the September SAT?
Unless you're the victim of a test cancellation or qualify for an SAT fee waiver, you'll have to pay the standard exam registration fee.
There is one exception, though. The College Board states that eligible students can register for the September SAT with a fee waiver. Contact your school's guidance counselor to discuss fee waiver options. Keep in mind as well that if your previous SAT administration date was cancelled, the fee for changing the date of your SAT registration will not apply to you.
Some students may not be able to register for the September exam before it fills up. If that's the case, there might be a chance that the College Board will allow you wait list for the exam.
Will Waitlist Status Be Available for the September SAT?
It isn't clear at this time if waitlist status will be available for the September SAT date. The College Board states that waitlist status is not available for scheduled makeup test administrations.
The September SAT date isn't technically designated as a makeup test, though many test-takers will use it for this purpose. If this specific info isn't provided on the College Board's website by early summer, contact their Customer Service for details.
A Quick Guide to the Current Information on the September 2020 SAT (Updated August 11, 2020)
If you're considering registering for the newly added September 2020 SAT date, you can look to the table below for the most important details about this testing date.This information comes straight from the College Board and will be updated to reflect any changes made by the College Board.
September 2020 SAT Fast Facts
|SAT Date||Are the SAT Subject Tests Offered?||What Is the Registration Deadline?||What Is the Late Registration Deadline?||What Is the Deadline for Registration Changes?||Is Waitlist Status Available?|
|Saturday, September 26, 2020||No||August 26, 2020||September 15, 2020||September 15, 2020||TBA|
This is the most up-to-date information we have on the September 2020 SAT date. Because important deadlines for the September SAT are still to be determined, we'll continue to update the table above as the College Board provides new info.
The College Board has also indicated that they will send emails directly to students who have a registered College Board account notifying them of the registration deadline, late registration deadline, and deadlines for registration changes.
Keep in mind that the College Board clearly states that the September 26 SAT date will remain on the calendar only if it's considered safe from a public health standpoint, so it's important to stay up-to-date on how the global pandemic is affecting college entrance exams over the next several months, which we'll talk more about below.
3 Ways to Stay Up-To-Date on the September 26 SAT Changes
Taking the SAT requires your time, money, and effort, so it's important to make sure you have a plan for staying aware of changes to the new September SAT date.
Here are our tip tips for staying up-to-date on any future SAT test changes.
#1: Sign Up for the PrepScholar Newsletter
Did you know that we send out a newsletter every week with information about upcoming tests, study strategies, and expert admissions tips that will get you into your dream school?
We're also keeping track of changes to the SAT and ACT exams, admission policies, and AP test credit as a result of COVID-19. If you're looking for an easy way to stay up-to-date on the changes that affect you, our newsletter is an excellent way to stay in the know.
Just type your email address into the newsletter box, and you're good to go!
#2: Check College Board's Coronavirus Updates Page
The College Board is providing consistent updates to its testing administration plans and policies on a special SAT and PSAT-Related Coronavirus Updates page. This is the place to go if you are uncertain about the status of the September SAT date, or if you have specific questions about policies for this testing date.
The Coronavirus Updates page also provides a helpful section of FAQs. These FAQs address everything from fees and refunds, to testing options for international students, to what will happen if the September testing date is also cancelled.
#3: Make Sure Your College Board Account Is Current
If you want to receive email updates and reminders for SAT dates and deadlines, you'll need to make sure you've created a College Board account online. When you create an account and provide your email address, make sure you've selected the option to receive email updates from the College Board. (This is optional, so it's worth double-checking that you're signed up for news and promotional emails if you already have an account!)
The College Board has explicitly stated that they will contact students directly to provide instructions for registration for the September SAT date, so you need to make sure you have a current email address linked up with your College Board account so you don't miss out on that information.
#4: Call Customer Service
As you navigate the changing situation with SAT dates during COVID-19, you might need person-to-person contact to find answers to questions pertaining to your unique situation as a student and test-taker.
For instance, many SAT takers plan to use a fee waiver when completing the online registration for fall SAT dates. If you are unable to register online using your fee waiver, you'll need to call College Board Customer Service!
There may be other situations like this one that require help from a real person. If you think this applies to you, you can reach College Board Customer Service by phone or email using the following:
- Email: email@example.com
- Phone (domestic): 866-756-7346
- Phone (international): +1-212-713-7789
If you're trying to take the ACT, you might have had your exams cancelled due to COVID-19, too. You can get the most up-to-date ACT exam cancellation information here.
COVID-19 is changing more than just standardized testing: it's also impacting the college admissions process for 2020. This article explains how fall admissions will be affected.
No matter when you decide to take your SAT, the key to getting a great SAT score is studying. (Sorry, but it's true!) A good place to start is by checking out our ultimate SAT study guide. Once you're done there, you can put together a study plan that works for you. And if you need extra help, be sure to check out our online SAT prep courses!
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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.