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SAT vs. ACT – What’s The Difference?

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The ACT and SAT both are standardized tests required to be accepted in universities throughout the United States . These two tests are scored to have a certain knowledge of how the student is going to perform in their campus and the way they will be able to manage the stress. This being said, it is worthwhile to understand the difference between these two. For example, the structure of the SAT is: math, reading, writing and language. On the other hand, the ACT is: math, science, reading, English, and for both standardized tests the essay is optional.

Like all standardized tests we can encounter some disadvantages of taking the SAT and is that for some math sections you are not allowed to use the calculator, when on the the ACT you are permitted to use it throughout the whole math test. Also the length of the ACT is two hours and fifty-five minutes and this test has more content than the SAT. The SAT length is three hours and has less content to cover.

Even though the essays are now optional for both tests, they are graded differently. The SAT is graded with the purpose of comprehension of a source text, while the ACT will test how well the test taker evaluates and analyzes complex issues.

Also, these tests are graded in different scales. This year, 2016, the new SAT is based out of 1600 because it is scored on a scale of 400-1600, meaning that it is two-thirds of the old SAT that consisted of 2400. An average score is calculated to be about 1500, that is why people are expecting to be around 1000. Consequently, the ACT is scored on a scale of 1-36.

Above all, one main difference there is between the SAT and the ACT is that the New SAT is widely accepted at all U.S. colleges, while the ACT is accepted in almost all U.S. colleges but not in all of them. For this reason, we decided to interview two current students from eleventh grade that have taken both standardized tests. Adriana Delgadillo and Alfredo Siezar agreed to be interviewed to share their experience after taking these tests.

To see the interview, click the link below:

Video Interview

By: Chantal Martínez (9th), Ma Valeria Delgadillo (11th), and Alejandra Calderón (12th).


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