Here at AIM, we advise students to prepare for one test – not both. So here are some tips on deciding which one is the best-fit for you:
Often times, students who are more STEM-oriented are drawn to the ACT, given that the SAT completely lacks a science section. The ACT includes a very in depth Science section that includes 40 questions, 6-7 scientific studies and a ton of visual data. It is important to note though that many of these questions are based on hypothetical studies and not necessarily based on actual science. It is fundamentally a reading comprehension section that requires a firm grasp on scientific language and basic concepts. The SAT doesn't ignore science though, as there is one dedicated science passage within the Reading section that usually has some scientific visual such as a chart or a table to interpret.
The last major difference between the ACT and the SAT would be study resource availability. Given that the SAT tends to be more popular, business involvement is larger, and thus there are a plethora of secondary resources and study guides catered to SAT prep. Not to say resources aren't available for the ACT, but just not as many. On the other hand, the ACT currently offers access to more past paper tests for prep purposes, since the SAT has recently changed format.
When choosing between the ACT or the SAT, we stress that students take a diagnostic exam of each to be able to properly determine which exam is more suited to the individual's test taking style. Many students will know immediately which one they prefer after taking a diagnostic sitting of each.
AIM offers a comprehensive diagnostic exam that we like to call "Bias Testing" which helps our expert counselors make recommendations for which exam students should take. Click HERE to book a Bias Testing session with us today.
Ready for that one on one personalized help? Book an Initial Consultation with us and let's begin planning your college prep strategy now.