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Testing Updates and Summit’s Recommendations during COVID-19

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ACT announced updates for fall 2020.

ACT has added three additional test dates in the fall. Please note the availability of these new dates will depend on whether the individual schools and test centers can safely host them. Read the official ACT announcement here.

Our Recommendations for Students:

  • We will not know what test center availability for fall test dates will look like until registration opens at the end of July.
  • We are anticipating that there will be more availability for the existing test dates and limited availability for the new test dates. Therefore, we recommend that students plan their test prep towards an existing test date, and check for new test date availability at registration.
  • Sunday testing is usually reserved for students with religious conflicts, but ACT will open that up as an option for all students this fall. Please note that just because the Sunday test dates are existing test dates, that doesn’t necessarily mean there will be wider availability.

Scroll down to view the latest calendar of SAT and ACT test dates.

Testing Updates

ACT

The July 18 test and makeup test date of July 25 are scheduled for test center locations that are able host them. ACT stated that they will post a list of cancelled test centers at the end of June.

ACT added 3 more national test dates to its fall schedule: September 19, October 10, and October 17.  Registration for fall ACT dates opens in July.

Also, ACT announced a remote proctoring option for the ACT test to become available in winter 2020. ACT has cancelled its plans to offer Section retesting this year.

Read more ACT coronavirus updates

SAT and Subject Tests

Registration for fall SAT and Subject Tests is open to all at this time. In addition to the September 26 National Test Day, College Board is adding a School Day administration on September 23.

College Board has suspended its plans to offer a remote at-home SAT for the upcoming year.

Read more SAT Coronavirus Updates

SSAT

The EMA is rolling out its new “SSAT at Home” this summer. The SSAT at Home is a remote-proctoring, online test environment that will be EMA’s main testing solution going forward. For U.S. and Canadian students, it replaces the scheduled paper test administrations (with the exception of Flex tests) with an on-demand offering. These students now have 3 options for taking the test: (1) SSAT At-Home, (2) Flex Testing, or (3) computer-based testing at a Prometric center.

Read the SSAT Testing Overview on EMA website.

ISEE

ERB, the administrators of the ISEE assessment, has suspended (until further notice) registration for its remotely-proctored testing option due to long wait times.

Read more ISEE coronavirus updates.

Summit’s Recommendations

Here are some general guidelines. Keep in mind that your approach should be personalized to your student. If you are a Summit client, your Program Director will make a customized recommendation based on your student and our shared history of tutoring sessions and practice tests.

High School Class of 2021

SAT VS ACTclass of 2021 who have not taken their first official SAT or ACT.

If you haven’t taken an SAT yet, you may want to consider registering for both the August and September SAT knowing that you can take it again in October if needed. For all of these 3 test dates, you will have scores back in time for a November 1 early decision deadline. For the regular decision deadline you could potentially test in November or December (if needed). Registration for the fall SAT dates is open. Most students test 2 or 3 times before college applications are due to make score improvements and to take advantage of superscoring and score choice options offered by some colleges.

If you are on the ACT path, the July 18 test is still on, along with a makeup date of July 25. However many schools are closed this summer, thereby eliminating certain test center locations from the July dates. In response to the limited availability of summer testing locations, ACT added three new national test dates in early fall. Start thinking about your fall testing plan, with the September ACT as your next opportunity. Registration for fall ACT opens in July (although a specific date hasn’t been announced, it usually coincides with the July test date).

For those who have not taken their first official test—whether you are on an SAT or ACT path—we strongly recommend that you take a full length practice test under realistic conditions soon.

It will be easier to make decisions about how to structure the timing and content of your test preparation with a recent baseline score in hand. Summit provides a free consultation to students which includes a detailed score analysis and advice on how and when to test. Please feel free to contact one of our Program Directors for help with your test plan.

SAT SUBJECT TESTSWith the cancellation of the June SAT/SAT Subject Tests we recommend that students who have yet to take an official SAT not worry about taking Subject Tests. As with all general recommendations, there are always exceptions, please reach out to your program director for additional guidance and advice on changes to your testing plan.

Keep in mind the vast majority of students aren’t going to need Subject Tests. Only a few schools have programs that require SAT Subject Tests. Even those schools that traditionally recommend them, are stating on their websites that they are de-emphasizing them.

SAT VS ACTClass of 2021 who have taken at least one official test.

Use that score to decide what to do next. Most students test 2 or 3 times before college applications are due to make score improvements and to take advantage of superscoring and score choice options offered by some colleges. But there are a small percentage of students who scored well the first time they took it and might decide they’re done.

For students on an SAT path whose test plan was to retest, we encourage you to secure a fall SAT date as soon as possible. We anticipate high demand for all tests scheduled during fall 2020. Keep in mind that for the November 1 early decision deadlines, the August, September, or October SAT dates will get your scores back in time. You could also potentially test in November or December and still make regular decision deadlines.

For students on an ACT path, the July 18 test is still on along with makeup date of July 25. However, many schools are closed this summer, thereby eliminating certain test center locations from the July dates. If you’re registered for July, hold onto it.  As a backup plan, consider registering now for a fall SAT (August, September) which you can cancel once you have successfully registered for the September ACT. Fall ACT registration opens in July.

SAT SUBJECT TESTSIf your test plan was to SAT retest in the fall, then using one of the other fall dates for SAT Subject Tests can be a good option. We want to emphasize though that taking your final SAT should take precedence over Subject Tests. If it makes sense for you go for it, but make sure you lock in your SAT score before worrying about SAT Subject Tests. ACT students who need Subject Tests, please note that they aren’t offered on the new SAT September date that was added by The College Board.

Online Tutoring
With our online programs you receive the same high-quality Summit experience and results. Our expert online tutoring services are available for:

SAT and ACT prep • AP exam prep • Academic subjects • SAT Subject Test prep • SSAT and ISEE prep

High School Class of 2022

Use the summer months to create your testing plan.

Most students in Class of 2022 were unaffected by the spring test cancellations. Both the SAT and ACT are curriculum based tests and a student’s performance correlates with age, maturity, and time spent in school. Students generally reach their peak score in spring of junior year or early fall of senior year.

Anticipating a high demand for seats at testing centers in fall 2020, we want to emphasize that having a clearly defined testing plan is important. We usually recommend that students take a practice SAT and ACT in the summer months leading up to junior year, then use these tests to decide between the SAT-ACT and create a test plan with target test dates and a study schedule. Taking these practice tests gives students an exposure to the type of content and difficulty level of the material, a sense of their strengths and weaknesses, and can uncover underlying skills that need to be improved upon.

The few situations where we diverge from our standard recommendation of targeting spring test dates are when you are strong scoring student, a recruited athlete, or know that spring of junior year is going to be too full of other commitments to make time for test preparation. These students typically move their testing timeline up to take advantage of the December test dates as their first opportunity to take the test.

These “early testers”, may want to consider registering for the December test when registration for the fall testing season opens up (at this writing, students can register for December SAT now, but wait until July to register for the December ACT). At Summit, we anticipate there will be a larger demand for seats at the fall test dates due to the seniors who were impacted by the spring 2020 cancellations. For early testers, taking an SAT and ACT practice test soon might be beneficial so they can know whether they are pursuing an SAT or ACT path, and get a jump on registering for the December test.

Virtual Proctored Practice Tests
Summit hosts free, online proctored practice tests so that students can still have the experience of a proctored full-length test. At this time, we offer SAT, ACT, and SSAT practice tests with options for regular time or extended time.

Fall 2020 Test Administrations

Dates are subject to change. Always check the test administrators’ website.

SAT & Subject Test Dates ACT Dates
August 29 July 18 (makeup date July 25)
September 26 (no Subject Tests) September 12
October 3 September 19 (new)
November 7 October 10 (new)
December 5 October 17 (new)
October 24
December 12

Additional Resources

The National Association of College Admission Counselors (NACAC) has created a central repository of changes in college admission events, deposit deadlines, and more.

nacac-college-admission-coronavirus

The British Council Americas has created this resource for counselors, students, and families to get updates on UK universities for the Americas‘ admissions and contact information during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Collegiate Commissioners Association announced March 15 that there would be no national letter of intent signings until April 15. NCAA Division I Committee has extended the recruiting dead period until May 31. Visit NCAA Coronavirus Resources.

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