Author: Rhonda Manns, Educational Consultant, A2Z College Planning
Everyone knows that an SAT or ACT score is an important part of the college admissions process, and yet many parents send their kids to take the test without any preparation at all.
Either test is a measuring gauge of what a child has learned up to that point in the education system. To achieve the best possible scores on either of these tests, regardless of how good your child’s grades are, some preparation is highly recommended.
How important is the SAT or ACT to a college? It is considered the second most important factor in the application. Scores in high school based on the degree of difficulty and any special academic accomplishments beyond those required provides the primary focus of admissions, but poor SAT or ACT scores can be a debilitating factor affecting a college’s decision.
Increase College Offers
Higher SAT/ACT scores mean more choices for majors in college as well as more colleges that will have an interest in the student’s attendance. While every college is concerned about filling classrooms and receiving tuition, it is the intent to take the students who will be better able to finish the courses and graduate with honors.
Everyone benefits from added points on the test, and some colleges won’t even consider a student for acceptance if their scores fall below a certain minimum.
Sponsors offer scholarships every year to students they deem deserving of their offers. They also use the scoring on the ACT or SAT when determining who receives scholarships.
Do Not Underachieve
The student who “settles” for a score rather than attempts to do their best is limiting their potential. This is also indicative of how the student will pursue higher education and life in general. The parent should instill the importance of academic achievement early in the education process and reinforce that concept throughout a child’s academic life.
Some study materials for the SAT and ACT are free, but the better prep packages do cost money. Consider it an investment in the child’s education that can make the difference in overall college costs and the level of achievement at that level. Sometimes your school’s guidance counselor keeps study material on hand to lend to students.
There are four primary fields of study represented in the SAT or ACT; these are Math, Writing, Critical Reading, and Vocabulary. Concentrating more on the weakest subjects is a proven way to get higher scores and achieve more balanced scoring, which is another consideration during evaluation for college acceptance.