Over the past few weeks, the education industry has made decisions that will be impacting the graduating class of 2020 and beyond. I want to use this opportunity to bring you up to speed on the latest information so that you are well informed. (Click here to read my previous updates and advice.)
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SAT, SAT Subject, ACT, & AP Exams
The College Board, which administers the SAT and AP Tests, is continually updating its list of test center closings and location changes for both US and international sites.
- The June 6th SAT and SAT Subject Test has now been added to the list of dates that have been canceled. (The May 2nd and the makeup test date scheduled for March 28th were canceled for both the SAT and SAT Subject Test.)
- If it’s safe from a public health standpoint, the College Board will offer SAT dates every month through the end of the calendar year, starting in August. This includes a new administration in September and the previously scheduled tests on August 29th, October 3th, November 7th, and December 5th.
- For international students, the SAT will be offered for each of those months except November. Still, the College Board is exploring an additional international administration to make up for November.
- The College Board is developing an at-home online testing option in the case public health protocols will not allow the traditional in-person testing to take place.
- ** UPDATE 4/24/20** College Board has added a new SAT date of September 26th. This date will be for the SAT only (no SAT Subject Testing will be available). Sunday testing for religious reasons will be available on September 27th.
- For the latest details and information, please visit https://pages.collegeboard.org/natural-disasters
SAT Subject Tests
- For the most common Subject Tests, students can expect multiple fall testing opportunities like usual. For Subject Tests only offered a couple of times a year, the College Board confirmed that it would reschedule those June Subject Tests.
- At this time, we do not have clarity about the weight that the SAT Subject Test will have on the admission applications for the Class of 2021 (current 11th graders).
- Our advice to clients for years has been to take the SAT Subject Test after three consecutive years of taking a foreign language course or immediately after completing the course in high school. We have found that the required preparation for the AP exam can help students prepare for the Subject Test too. However, there have been recent pleas from school counselors and educational consultants to colleges requesting the removal of the Subject Test from the application process.
Advanced Placement (AP) Changes
- The College Board will be administering the AP exams online between May 11th-22th at specific times. See below for the complete AP exam schedule.
- The exam will be 45-minutes in length and will be limited to material covered through early March.
- It will not be multiple-choice, but a free-response exam instead with the option for students to use open book/notes.
- Students will be able to take exams on any device they have access to (computer, tablet, or smartphone). Students will have the option of either typing and uploading their responses or writing responses by hand and submitting it via a photo from their cell phone.
- In late April, the College Board will provide students with information on how to access the testing system on test day, and video demonstrations so that students can familiarize themselves with the system.
- For the latest details, please visit https://apcentral.collegeboard.org/about-ap/news-changes/coronavirus-update
- The schedule for the exams are as follows:
- As of April 20th, ACT has not announced a cancellation of the June 13th.
- Pending public health guidelines, ACT has added two additional exam date on June 20th and July 25th. The newly added dates are not yet listed on the registration portal, but we expect they will appear in the coming days.
- For the latest updates, please visit https://www.act.org/content/act/en/covid-19.html
New Online ACT
- ACT announced in October 2019 plans to alter testing and scoring policies drastically. Starting in September 2020, students will be able to:
- Retake individual ACT sections instead of the full ACT
- Choose between online testing with faster results (2 days) or paper testing
- Receive an ACT Superscore
- Students who are interested in ACT section retesting should know these three facts:
- Section retests are available only in digital format.
- Students can retake up to three sections per sitting over seven dates.
- The cost and registration procedures are not known yet.
- For more details, please visit https://www.act.org/content/act/en/act-september-2020.html
Test-Optional & Test-Flexible Plans
- If you are a student that believes your test scores do not accurately reflect your academic potential or have time constraints due to the pandemic, then you may want to consider reviewing the list of colleges at www.fairtest.org that offer test-optional and test-flexible plans.
- Several schools have recently decided to go test-optional (at least for the 2020-2021 admissions cycle). Below is a list of a few of them.
- Amherst College
- Boston University
- Case Western Reserve University
- Hamilton College
- Loyola Marymount University
- Northeastern University
- Pomona College
- Swarthmore College
- Tuft University
- Tulane University
- University of Redland
- University of California (All Locations)
- University of Washington
- Vassar College
- Virginia Tech
- Click here for a complete list of schools that have gone test-optional.
2. Testing Resources
- Kaplan is giving away 1-month access to their on-demand ONLINE SAT Test Prep.
- To help students prepare for Advanced Placement exams, Kaplan will be hosting live review and Q&A sessions on their YouTube, which will be led by expert instructors. The review sessions go live starting at 1 PM EST on weekdays through at least Friday, March 27th.
- To review a list of previous recordings click here
3. College Information & Virtual Tours
Deposit Deadlines & Other Changes
- National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC) has released the Enrollment Deposit Waiver Form, which available for students & counselors to request that an enrollment deposit waiver (of deferral) based on income and need.
- NACAC has also created an online tool that is a central resource on changes to the college admissions process due to the coronavirus outbreak.
- The tool includes information from colleges and universities on campus closures, deposit deadlines, and other admission-related changes. The information is updated automatically in real-time as input is received from postsecondary institutions: nacacnet.org/college-admission-status-coronavirus
Virtual College Fairs & Tours
- Strive will be hosting a virtual college fair for 11th graders on Monday, April 20th – Thursday, April 23rd with over 300 colleges/universities in attendance. For more details and to register, click here.
- Again, here is a list of my favorite sources for virtual tours. Some of the tours are virtual goggles enabled.
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