Prospective Student-Athletes and the College Admission Tests
For student athletes aiming for NCAA Division I or II schools, the college admission process involves additional steps. Recruited athletes must meet minimum academic eligibility standards set by NCAA, as well as the entrance requirements of the schools on their target list (e.g. minimum GPA and standardized test scores). After that, their acceptance or rejection is largely determined by the coach’s ranking. NCAA Division III schools have different policies and schools and coaches should be consulted for their specific criteria.
Most athletes need strong grades and SAT/ACT scores in addition to their athletic abilities to rank highly on coaches lists. However, between academics, sports schedules, college planning, and a social life, students have a lot to manage.
Summit is very familiar with the unique set of challenges that student athletes face. Through our 30+ years helping students succeed at the SAT and ACT, we’ve developed a set of best practices for test planning and preparation.
Plan Early for the Tests
We recommend that, in spring of sophomore year, athletes start the planning process by taking a practice SAT and ACT. These initial practice tests give students an exposure to the format, question types, and pacing of each test, and the test-taking experience and scores are important inputs to the decision whether to prep for the SAT or ACT. With the scores in hand, a Summit program director will help you analyze the results, identify strengths and areas for improvement, and provide guidance on your testing plan. Your test plan should answer the questions: Which test to take? When to take them? When and how to prepare for them?
Students can take free proctored practice tests with Summit, with flexible in-person or remote proctoring options. When you’re ready to get started, view the schedule and sign up for the practice tests.
Work with High Quality Professionals
Athletes rarely achieve excellence without personalized training and support from qualified professionals. Doing well on the SAT and ACT is no different.
Summit creates individualized one-on-one tutoring programs with a tutor who is hand-matched to the student. Our tutors are highly qualified testing experts and receive best-in-class training, both initially and throughout their careers with Summit. They love what they do, and they know how to engage students and build confidence. All are professionals, both within and outside the educational field, have scored in the 95th percentile on the tests, and many have advanced degrees.
Get Your Student Athlete to the Next Level
Working with Summit, students get personalized one-on-one support to achieve their score goals. The best evidence of Summit’s ability to help students succeed is the fact that 85% of our families are referred to us by school counselors, educational consultants, and other families. They’ve all seen firsthand how our approach builds confidence and improves test scores.
While there are no standard packages and no minimum commitment required, our typical test prep programs consist of ten to fifteen weekly 90-minute sessions. Your test preparation takes place on your schedule. Finding time to prepare for standardized tests can be challenging. Let us help remove that challenge.
Consider Academic Tutoring to Increase GPA
Summit’s highly qualified tutors can also help students stay on track and improve school performance by providing customized, targeted support for specific academic subjects. Summit tutors reinforce classroom learning using the same class materials to provide additional instruction time, help with homework, and answer questions/facilitate study sessions for tests. Our tutors also help with time-management, study skills, and note-taking – all of which are very beneficial to know in advance of college enrollment.
RESOURCES FOR PROSPECTIVE STUDENT-ATHLETES
NCAA divisions are based on school size, funding for athletics, campus experience for student-athletes, and availability of athletic scholarships. NCAA.org
DIVISION I (346 schools) – Larger student bodies, budgets, and media attention. Prospective student athletes must be certified as NCAA eligible to practice, compete, or receive athletics scholarships. Strict limits are imposed by NCAA on how DI coaches can recruit.
DIVISION II (307 schools) – Emphasize a balance between academics and athletics. Prospective student athletes must be certified as NCAA eligible to practice, compete, or receive athletics scholarships. Limits are imposed by NCAA on how DII coaches can recruit.
DIVISION III (439 schools) – Focus is more on academics for athletes and their integration with campus life. Shorter sports seasons emphasize regional competition. Prospective student athletes meet the same academic standards as the rest of the student body. There are some limits on how DIII coaches can recruit.
“Earn an SAT combined score or ACT sum score matching your core-course GPA on the Division I sliding scale, which balances your test score and core-course GPA.” (NCAA website)
The College Athletic Recruitment Process – key takeaways and tips from our discussion with college coaches and industry experts.