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SAT and ACT Updates

Dear A-List Family,

We hope you are well and healthy and wanted to share some recent test updates. While we expect that standardized testing will continue to be disrupted this year, we are here to help your family gameplan and prepare for any tests students can take.

The SAT will not be offered online this year.

The SAT has this week opened up general registration, but the College Board is not committing to online testing this year, only to in-person testing. They recently made a statement about access to the internet being a challenge for many students, asking colleges to be more flexible with their application requirements. As in-home AP tests were not without hiccups, we aren’t surprised they aren’t committing to an in-home SAT just yet.

The ACT will be offered online, but we expect most students to take it on paper.

The ACT is at present still committed to online testing of some sort, but they have yet to announce how exactly it will work. Realistically, we don’t expect every student will be able to take the test at home, and we also don’t think it’s likely that testing centers will be set up quickly enough to roll online testing out large-scale this year, so you should expect to take the ACT in-person and most likely on paper. ACT has not been cancelling test administrations on their end, instead leaving it up to individual test centers to make that decision, so contact your test center to hear their latest updates.

The process is likely going to be more frustrating than usual.

In general, this process is going to be challenging and likely a little frustrating for everyone. The College Board and ACT are doing their best to balance serving students without contributing to the spread of COVID-19. We expect that getting a seat at a test is going to be possible for most students, but it will likely not be as easy or convenient as we would all prefer.

Several more schools have announced test-optional policies this year, most recently Columbia and Dartmouth, and we expect that schools will heed the College Board and in general be more flexible about accepting applications from students without standardized test scores, especially if they live in very densely populated areas or those hit hardest by COVID. 

However, especially with many schools making classes pass-fail this semester and complications around AP testing, standardized tests are still going to be one of the best ways to quantifiably demonstrate academic excellence.

We are here to help.

Some sites for both tests will likely be doing testing by enforcing social distancing and having more rooms available in the fall, but we know that those seats will go quickly and we expect a shortfall of availability, so sign up for whatever test(s) you can get. We’ll help you gameplan and prep for those tests in the most effective way possible. 


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