SAT and ACT FAQs: When Should I Take the SAT and the ACT?

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Making sure you are prepared to take these lengthy and difficult standardized tests is important before jumping in head first. This article explains the testing dates for SAT and ACT and and gives you an idea of the right time to take the exams.
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Each year, SAT is given on one of the Saturdays in October, December, February, March or April, and in June. If you are unable to take SAT on a Saturday for religious reasons, there are special Sunday administrations of the test. The same is also true for ACT.

Since the reason you are taking the tests is to complete an entrance requirement for a college or university, you should take the test in your junior year of high school. Testing in March will give you plenty of time to complete any necessary school work and (if you decide to do so) will give you a few months' time to study for SAT. Then, you will have your results for both tests in plenty of time to apply to many colleges and universities during your senior year. You shouldn't take either test before March of your junior year, as both tests cover the entire high school curriculum.

If you plan on taking either test again, do it in October or November of your senior year. This way, you'll still have time to meet college application deadlines for fall of the next year. The only reason you may want to take the test before your junior year is because you are a middle school student who is taking the test to try to get admitted to a summer academic program.

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Featured Schools

American University

  • Master of Arts in Strategic Communication
  • Master of Arts in Strategic Communication - Advocacy and Social Impact Concentration
  • Master of Arts in Economics

What is your highest level of education?

Full Sail University

  • Master of Science - Film Production
  • MS - Entertainment Business (Campus)
  • BS - Sportscasting (Campus)
  • Bachelor of Science - Software Development

What is your highest level of education?

The George Washington University

  • MSHS Medical Laboratory Sciences
  • MSHS in Immunohematology and Biotechnology
  • BSHS in Clinical Operations and Healthcare Management
  • BSHS in Medical Laboratory Sciences

What is your highest level of education?

Purdue University Global

  • Master of Science - DNP Executive Leader
  • MS in Psychology - Forensic Psychology
  • Bachelor: Liberal Studies
  • AAS in Legal Support and Services
  • Medical Assisting Certificate

Which subject are you interested in?

Liberty University

  • Doctor Of Education - Leadership
  • Doctor of Education - Curriculum and Instruction
  • MA: Communication
  • MA: Professional Counseling

What is your highest level of education?

Grand Canyon University

  • EdD in Organizational Leadership - Health Care Administration
  • MA in Curriculum and Instruction
  • BS in Psychology

What is your highest level of education?

Colorado Christian University

  • Doctor of Nursing Practice in Visionary Leadership
  • Criminal Justice, M.S.
  • Psychology, B.S.
  • Criminal Justice, A.S.

What is your highest level of education completed?

Walden University

  • Doctor of Education (EdD) - Curriculum, Instruction & Assessment
  • PhD in Criminal Justice - General
  • MS in Education - Curriculum, Instruction & Assessment (Grades K-12)
  • MS in Education - Self-Designed

What is your highest level of education completed?