Confused about the SAT and ACT? - Merit Educational Consultants

Confused about the SAT and ACT?

Not sure whether the SAT or ACT is better for your child? Join the club! 
There are many factors to consider when comparing what test your child should take and it could take dozens of pages to describe them — and then you’ll really be thoroughly confused.  
So, here are the general factors to consider: 
Take the ACT if you:
  • Can read fast and still understand the concept while zipping through 60 questions in 60 minutes
  • Have taken trigonometry and understand harder math concepts (imaginary number, logarithms, and advanced geometry)
  • Are great at managing your time under pressure and can plow through straight-forward questions
  • Prefer to guess on questions because you aren’t penalized .25 a point for guessing
Take the SAT if you:
  • Have a strong vocabulary and strong reading comprehension skills
  • Haven’t taken trigonometry or precalculus but can solve tricky word problems
  • Get flustered with short time allotments for multiple-choice questions and prefer fewer questions even if they’re intentionally confusing
  • Are a strong problem solver and critical thinker 
The best way to really determine which test is the best for your child is to have her take both of them in a practice test setting. To be fair, give the test on the same day, say Saturday, at the same time, say 8:00 am and follow all of the time protocols. Score the tests and them compare the scores here:
The SAT will change starting with the March 2016 sitting so come back to learn more about the differences between the new tests if you’re planning on taking them next year. Good luck!