PSAT results are out  - Next Steps

Test Prep/Testing Timeline

Practice Test Dates are specific to EDNavigators LLC. SAT and ACT Test Dates are nationwide.

Practice Test Dates are specific to EDNavigators LLC. SAT and ACT Test Dates are nationwide.

If you are a sophomore in high school

  1. Go over your PSAT using the Khan Academy site as soon as you can.  The answer explanations are there and going over the specific questions you missed will give you the best feel for which areas to study. It will allow you to see the types of questions you missed and the types of mistakes you made.

  2. Continue to focus in school. If there is a math concept you do not understand, stick with it until you understand it. (Khan Academy has great math video tutorials.)

  3. Read often - suggested reading resources

  4. Plan to take a full practice SAT and/or ACT this spring or summer and plan prep based upon your results. This page helps with planning of prep and test dates.

If you are a junior in high school

  1. Go over your PSAT using the Khan Academy site as soon as you can.  The answer explanations are there and going over the specific questions you missed will give you the best feel for which areas to study. It will allow you to see the types of questions you missed and the types of mistakes you made.

  2. Continue to focus in school. If there is a math concept you do not understand, stick with it until you understand it. (Khan Academy has great math video tutorials.)

  3. Read often - suggested reading resources

  4. Continue prep on Khan Academy or begin test prep between now and June depending upon your schedule.  This page helps with planning of prep and test dates.

Answers to Frequently Asked Questions About Standardized Testing

Guide to Understanding PSAT-NMSQT Scores

Start thinking about Your Best-Fit College or University (Academic fit, Social fit, Financial fit, Cultural fit, Environmental fit)

Sandy Aprahamian, M.Ed.

I just hit 'submit' on my college applications. - Now what?

I just hit 'submit' on my college applications. - Now what?

Double check to make sure your application was indeed submitted by following the links below:

If you submitted through the Coalition 

If you submitted through the Common App

Within a couple days, you should receive an email from each college to which you applied acknowledging receipt of your application and providing directions for setting up an application portal.

Set up the portal as soon as you get the email and check on the portal to see if there are any of your application components missing.  Keep this portal login information handy as it is where many schools post their application decisions.

Three significant events in the world of standardized testing over the past few months

Screen_Shot_2016-01-13_at_12_53_41_PM 2

  1. More universities are dropping the SAT/ACT writing requirement
  • Harvard
  • Yale
  • University of San Diego
  • Princeton
  • Stanford
  • California Institute of Technology
  • Brown
  • Duke

     2. More universities went test optional

  • University of Chicago
  • University of New England
  • Sweet Briar College

     3. The June SAT grading scale has caused many to question its fairness.

Check out the new Frequently Asked Questions section on our website for more information on standardized testing and the college process.

Getting Started on College Applications - The Application Platforms

Business desk concept - LearningSummer is a great time to start college applications.

With this, many people ask, "How do I get started?"

Once you select where you are interested in applying, check which application type the college or university accepts.

There are four main college application platforms. Which you use is dependent upon which type is accepted by the college to which you are applying.

1. The Common App

Common App Tour (6min video)

If your school uses Naviance, you need to use the same email address and date of birth that you used to create your Common App account in order to match your Common App and Naviance accounts. Ask your guidance counselor which email to use if you are unsure. You will also need to add at least one school to your My Colleges list and complete the FERPA waiver in the Common App before matching can be completed.

A PDF Quick Guide to the Common App

FERPA and Your Application

2. Coalition Application

Coalition Application

Quick Guide to the Coalition Application

3. Universal College Application

The Universal College Application

4. School Specific Applications

Sample PDF of Virginia Tech Application (also available in an online format)


- Sandy Aprahamian - EDNavigators LLC

How to Interpret PSAT Scores

What do my PSAT scores mean?PSAT scores are out today and many students and parents are wondering exactly what the scores mean. As an Educational Consultant, I attend many meetings and webinars with people in the field of College Admissions.  Two test prep companies (whose information I value) recently provided the following charts which are helpful and accurate in interpreting scores.

Inspiration for Mothers of Teens

I had the opportunity to speak with Randi Crawford of FeelingFabulousPodcast recently.  Randi is an inspiration for mothers of teens. She has spoken with extremely impressive and accomplished mothers who have great stories and motivation to share.  Click on the Zebra to listen to why Randi started her podcast. Screen Shot 2017-11-17 at 12.07.30 PM

Click on the image below to listen to my interview.

Meet Sandy AprahamianEdNavigatorsShe will help you

And for continued inspiration click here to access the podcasts of the amazing women Randi has interviewed.

2017-2018 Common App Essay Prompts

2017-2018 Common Application Essay Prompts650 word limit 1. Some students have a background, identity, interest, or talent that is so meaningful they believe their application would be incomplete without it. If this sounds like you, then please share your story.

2. The lessons we take from obstacles we encounter can be fundamental to later success. Recount a time when you faced a challenge, setback, or failure. How did it affect you, and what did you learn from the experience?

3. Reflect on a time when you questioned or challenged a belief or idea. What prompted your thinking? What was the outcome?

4. Describe a problem you've solved or a problem you'd like to solve. It can be an intellectual challenge, a research query, an ethical dilemma - anything that is of personal importance, no matter the scale. Explain its significance to you and what steps you took or could be taken to identify a solution.

5. Discuss an accomplishment, event, or realization that sparked a period of personal growth and a new understanding of yourself or others.

6. Describe a topic, idea, or concept you find so engaging that it makes you lose all track of time. Why does it captivate you? What or who do you turn to when you want to learn more?

7. Share an essay on any topic of your choice. It can be one you've already written, one that responds to a different prompt, or one of your own design. 

Things to Consider in Deciding Between the ACT and the SAT (as of January 2017)

  screen-shot-2017-01-09-at-12-41-56-pm2016 was a big year of change in the standardized testing landscape.  Now that the rSAT has been in place for almost a year and the ACT has slipped in its own test changes, it is more clear how the two tests compare.  Keep in mind that there is no guarantee that more changes are not on the horizon (either subtly slipped in changes or announced changes)  For now though, below is a comparison of the ACT and the SAT as of January 2017

Total Time:

3 hours 50 min with essay (3 hours without essay) 3 hours 35 min with essay (2 hours 55 min without essay)


Questions/Concepts are Narrow and Deep Questions/Concepts are Broad and Shallow
60% of Math is Algebra 30% of Math is Algebra
There is  No-Calculator Section Calculator is allowed for entire math section
You have 83 seconds/question You have 60 seconds/question


Requires deep understanding and includes graphics (13 min/passage 10-11 questions/passage) 65 min total Requires quick and efficient reading (8.75 min/passage 10 questions/passage) 35 min total

English (very similar tests - grammar, editing, punctuation, rhetoric)

48 sec/question - includes graphs and charts and more main idea and author’s intent questions 36 sec/question

Science (neither test requires much specific science knowledge)

21 science questions included in the test -no separate science section Separate section -  requires quick interpretation, reasoning and analysis

Essay - Optional for Both SAT and ACT

Analyze a persuasive essay

Score is separate from the 800 Reading/Language and the 800 Math

Write a persuasive essay - ACT essay scoring has changed a lot in 2016

Score is not calculated in the composite but is calculated in the ELA subscore



Super-scoring: more schools super-score the SAT than the ACT (This decision is controlled by the colleges and is subject to change at any time. Checking the school’s website is the only way to know the school’s current policy.)

SAT Subject Tests: some schools that require SAT Subject Tests do not require the SAT Subject Tests when the student submits the ACT score (Rice, Tufts, McGill)


  • SAT extra time is added to each individual section (if given 1 hour to take the English Language, the student must wait that full hour before moving on to math) - SAT just made the process of getting accommodations simpler (yet to see if ACT will simplify their process as well)
  • ACT extra time is given for the test as a whole - The student moves through the test at his/her own pace and may leave the testing center if finished before the full added time is used.

Cancelling of Scores

  • SAT - you have until 11:59 EDT Wednesday after you take the test to cancel your scores
  • ACT - If you ordered that your scores be sent to schools, you have until Thursday noon central time after the Saturday you took the ACT to stop your ACT scores from being sent to the schools.  ACT also has a process to delete a test from record.

Sending of Scores

  • SAT - scores are ordered and sent in a bundle
  • ACT - scores are ordered and sent one test at a time

***all of the above information is subject to change - the only way to know the current information is to visit the SAT, ACT or college websites

EDNavigators recommends that all students take a full practice ACT and a full practice SAT before deciding which test to prepare for and take for real.  It is the only way to know which is better for the student and to avoid second-guessing the decision later in the process.

Ten Valuable Take-Aways from The HECA Conference in Philadelphia June 2016

I met many knowledgeable and caring professionals including other IECs (Independent Educational Consultants), college presidents, college admissions representatives, vendors and authors at the HECA conference in Philadelphia last week.  I toured eight college campuses, attended nine workshops and listened to leaders in the field speak about college admissions, Liberal Arts Colleges, the current and future state of higher education and the Coalition for Access and Admission in Higher Education. The conference was extremely valuable and information rich. These ten valuable take-aways offer only a glimpse of what was offered.

Ten Valuable Take-Aways from the HECA conference in Philadelphia June 2016

(- not all new information, but information that I feel is valuable for my students and families to know)

  1. Checking the box indicating that you are applying for financial aid in the college application can cause your application to be considered incomplete to the college until all financial firms are submitted.
  2. It is important that after registering for any future SAT test, students check the email associated with their College Board account. The College Board implemented a new plan in June 2016. Selected students who register for the test will receive an email stating that they are required to submit a Verification Form by a given deadline. If the form is not submitted by this deadline, College Board will cancel the student’s registration and credit the registration fee back to the credit card. Avoid the surprise of showing up for the SAT only to find that you are not actually registered.  Students MUST check their email often.
  3. There are three different routes to the military: Service Academies, ROTC (Reserve Officers Training Corps) and OCS (Officer Candidate School)  Each path has different requirements
  4. There is a company called New Frontiers in Learning that is full of trained professionals to help students with learning difficulties navigate the transition to college and learn to self advocate.
  5. HECA members as a whole are dedicated, collaborative, extremely caring and knowledgeable professionals in the field of college consulting.
  6. Liberal arts students are in demand: CIC Website For higher ed professionals - LiberalArtsPower For students and parents-  LiberalArtsLife Can you see yourself in this environment- @smartcolleges twitterfeed
  7. Purpose fuels GRIT and experiencing failure is essential to building resiliency
  8. Colleges want to admit students who will succeed there. If there is a concern about that, some colleges give the student a chance to try it out before committing. (Passport Program- St Joseph's University)
  9. Colleges and Universities have priorities in building their class each year. Their goal is to build a community of students who will help the university continue on its mission.
  10. Each college/university has special qualities just as each student does. The staff and faculty at those colleges really want their students to take advantage of all the school has to offer.
  • A pre-med student really can actively pursue the arts in college as well. Muhlenberg College, Swarthmore College
  • A women's college can be made as coed as the student desires it to be.
  • Traditions are strong on most campuses (Bryn Mawr /Haverford/ Lehigh/Lafayette)
  • Engineering and business can be combined. (Lehigh IBE, Villanova SBI)
  • Pass fail evaluations require exceptional knowledge of a given subject and/or field. (Swarthmore College Honors Program)
  • Intellectual curiosity is very important - Haverford College
  • Jesuit colleges have the mission of developing students of giving character with a strong appreciation of differences. (Villanova University, Saint Josephs University)
  • Not every arts focused student needs to present a portfolio for admission. For schools that do require it, specific types of art are required and the admissions staff is there to help students through the process. (Muhlenberg College, Tyler School of Art at Temple University, University of the Arts in Philadelphia)
  • There are colleges who aim to provide both admission decisions and financial aid awards to early admission applicants by December 20. (Drew University)
  • Sandy Aprahamian, EDNavigators LLC


    Interpreting rSAT Scores

    Screen Shot 2016-05-10 at 5.31.21 PMThe scores for the March SATs (rSAT) were released today.  The College Board released this converter tool to use in converting SAT scores from new to old and from old to new. The conversions indicate that the test has been re-centered.  This means that the new concordance tables are showing the mean score for the rSAT looks to be closer to a 1090.  The mean score for the previous SAT was a 1010.

    A few leaders in the test-prep/college counseling world have created some nice graphics to show the score comparisons between the old SAT, the new SAT and the ACT.

    Comparison and Concordance of the New SAT and ACT, Compass Education Group, Art Sawyer - May 2016

    Higher Ed Data Stories - New SAT Concordance Tables, Jon Boeckenstedt - May 2016

    RE-CENTERING REDUX, Ethical College Admissions, James Jump - May 2016

    2016-2017 Essay Prompts Released

    Screen Shot 2016-01-28 at 5.57.15 PMThe prompts are the same as they were for the 2015-2016 application cycle. 2016-2017 Essay Prompts 1. Some students have a background, identity, interest, or talent that is so meaningful they believe their application would be incomplete without it. If this sounds like you, then please share your story. 2. The lessons we take from failure can be fundamental to later success. Recount an incident or time when you experienced failure. How did it affect you, and what did you learn from the experience? 3. Reflect on a time when you challenged a belief or idea. What prompted you to act? Would you make the same decision again? 4. Describe a problem you've solved or a problem you'd like to solve. It can be an intellectual challenge, a research query, an ethical dilemma - anything that is of personal importance, no matter the scale. Explain its significance to you and what steps you took or could be taken to identify a solution. 5. Discuss an accomplishment or event, formal or informal, that marked your transition from childhood to adulthood within your culture, community, or family.

    The essay that results from one of these prompts is sometimes referred to as the personal statement portion of the college appliction.  It is one of a few or many essays a student will be asked to write during the college application process.  Since Fall of senior year tends to be very busy, a good time to work on the personal essay is the summer between junior and senior year.

    PSAT Scores are Back - Tips on Interpreting Scores -

    PSAT scores were released over the past week.  For those students who were able to access them, many are not clear on how to interpret them.

    Most common questions:

    Based on my PSAT results, how will I do on the SAT?

    Official concordance tables have not been released to predict how the 2015 PSAT scores would project to the SAT - A perfect score on the SAT is a 1600. A perfect score on the PSAT is a 1520. The PSAT perfect score is lower because the SAT is more difficult than the PSAT. The PSAT 1520 perfect score is shifted down to account for its differences in difficulty level. While a perfect score on the PSAT suggests you might earn a perfect score on the SAT, this is not certain because the additional questions on the SAT will be more difficult than those that were on the PSAT.  Many in the industry have also noticed somewhat inflated PSAT scores this year.

    Will I qualify for the National Merit Scholarship?

    National Merit Scholarship Qualification is based on your NMSC Selection Index Score.  The selection index score can be found on the third page of your PSAT score report.  The Selection Index Score is calculated by weighting your Writing score ⅔ and your Math score ⅓ - More information about the PSAT/NMSQT can be found in the student guide.

    Official selection index score cut-offs have not yet been determined for the class of 2017, but the predicted scores by state can be found here.

    Should I take the ACT or the SAT?

    Rather than reinvent the wheel, I refer to this article and chart by Compass Prep with the reminder that the most difficult SAT questions were left off the PSAT, the scoring of the March SAT will be delayed and preparation for one test overlaps preparation for the other.

    If I decide to take the SAT, do I need to take it with writing?

    It depends. This link will provide some insight into that.

    Sandy Aprahamian, M.Ed.  EDNavigators LLC


    Do I Have to Take the Writing Section of the SAT or ACT?

      Screen_Shot_2016-01-13_at_12_53_41_PM 2With the College Board making the SAT Essay optional for SAT test takers beginning in March 2016 and the ACT, which already had a writing optional status, changing its writing section format,  many students are wondering if they need to take the writing section of either test.  

    In short, as with most college admissions related questions, the answer is:  It depends.  It depends upon which colleges/universities you are interested in.  Some colleges and universities have decided on their policy with regard to writing and some have yet to decide.  Since the list of where each school stands on the essay is continually being updated, it is best to check one or both of these links where the website owners, College Board, and Compass Prep are updating their information regularly.  If in doubt about a certain school, it is best to take the writing section of the tests just in case.

    Chart Compiled by Compass Prep

    College Board List addressing  SAT only

    Sandy Aprahamian, MEd.  EDNavigators LLC

    Seven Simple Comma Rules to Know for the ACT


    Use Commas in the following situations:Screen Shot 2015-12-10 at 3.11.02 PM


    • For, And, Nor, But, Or, Yet, So to combine two complete sentence (if not combining two complete sentences, no comma)


    • a dependent clause that is followed by an independent clause (Before he ate cake, he ate dinner.)
    • an introductory word or phrase (However, …)


    • non-essential phrases in middle of sentence( …., however, ...)
    • non-essential appositive phrases 


    • items on a list (comma before and is optional)
    • adjectives when their order does not matter

    When in doubt, leave the comma out.

    Sandy Aprahamian, EDNavigators LLC

    Five Essential Components for Success on the ACTScreen Shot 2015-11-30 at 10.29.02 AM


    Attitude - Success requires a positive attitude.  Think, “If it can be done, I can do it!”.  You need to really WANT to do well and you must squash the ANT (Automatic Negative Thinking) Eliminate all negative thinking during prep and during the actual test.  There is no room or time for negative self-talk during the ACT.  

    Application - Work through retired ACT questions and take retired ACT practice tests before sitting for the real test. Understand the correct answer to every question you miss as question types repeat themselves on standardized tests.


    Content - Fully understand the content that is being tested

    Commitment - Make the test a priority.  Commit yourself to dedicated preparation and focusing on areas of weakness.


    Time - Finding time for quality test preparation is usually the biggest challenge in the life of high school students today. ACT success requires quality focused preparation time:dedicated work on content and retired ACT questions, timed full length practice tests, time put into reading and studies. Testing time is tight on the ACT.  You must work at a fast pace. Pace increases when you know what to expect on the test and have confidence solving similar questions - practice questions from retired tests.  Pace increases with practice under timed conditions - time yourself when taking practice tests and working on practice test sections.  Read this post for suggestions specific to increasing reading speed.

    Sandy Aprahamian, EDNavigators LLC

    PPY - A Term That it Would Be Wise for Parents of the High School Class of 2017 and Beyond to Know

    $ for CollegeWhy know the term PPY? - PPY will be used to determine eligibility for federal financial aid What does PPY stand for? - Prior-Prior Year

    What is PPY? - The tax year that will be used to identify a family's Estimated Family Contribution (EFC) for college.  The EFC is a dollar amount which the federal government determines that a family can afford to pay for a year of education.

    Why is this important? The Federal EFC for the class of 2017 will be based on this tax year (2015) - In the past it would have been based on next year (the 2016 tax year) - This can make a significant difference in financial aid eligibility for families with fluctuating income levels.

    Beginning with the high school class graduating in 2017, a family's federal EFC will be based upon the prior prior year (PPY) tax return - the year the student is in the spring of his/her sophomore year and fall of his/her junior year of high school.

    For a more comprehensive description of PPY and the financial aid process, visit

    Sandy Aprahamian, EDNavigators LLC

    CollegeAffordability (This is a great website!  I have met the owner of this company and respect his knowledge and the fact that his work is fee-based - no commissions - no hidden agendas.)

    The 2015-2016 Common Application is Live - 3 Key Things to Do Before You Log In

    The Common ApplicationThe 2015-2016 Common Application, an online application system that allows students to input their undergraduate application information once and have it sent to all student selected member schools, went live today. This one-time input is a great time saver!  However, most schools require additional input which is unique to their institution (supplemental essays, portfolios, etc.)  With so many components to the college application process, things can still get quite confusing. Students should take their time setting up their Common Application accounts.  Errors made early on can make the process much more challenging than it needs to be. 3 Key Things Seniors Should Do Before Setting Up The Common App Account

    1. Gather the following items before you sit down at the computer to set up your account:  a copy of your transcript and your senior year courses, a list of your activities, dates and scores from standardized tests and parent information (address, employment information, education)
    2.  Set up a system for keeping track of login information.  ( EDNavigators students should record their usernames and passwords in their Guided Path account.) There will be many passwords to keep track of as you apply to college. Keep your Common App username and password recorded in a place where you will remember it (Your username will be your email. You'll need to use this exact email to link your family connection/naviance account to the common app so your transcript and recommendations can be sent from you high school. )  
    3. Bookmark these two sites for easy access over the next few months: The Common App Login Page  The Common App Training Resources Library (The resource library has a lot of valuable set up information and answers to many troubleshooting questions.)

    In addition to getting started with the basics of the Common App, seniors may want to get started on their Common Application essay.   The 2015-2016 Common Application Essay prompts can be found here.

    Sandy Aprahamian, EDNavigators LLC

    Improve Reading Speed and Comprehension for the ACT

    Read to SucceedReading is a learned skill that builds upon itself. Reading often is the best way to improve comprehension and reading speed. Reading connects people places and times. It builds on personal experiences and learned knowledge.

    A reader can improve reading comprehension by:

    • Selecting reading material of interest.
    • Reading with purpose - reading title page/ copyright and introduction and connecting time and place if given - getting any background available
    • Focusing - shuting out negative thinking and distractions
    • Looking up new vocabulary and concepts as they come up

    A reader can improve reading speed by:

    1. Understanding that Speed Reading is basically more focused reading.  The best way to increase reading speed is to read often with focus and concentration.  Continued practice is key.
    2. Gently trying to read faster than comfortable.
    3. Grouping Words
    4. Trying out these free apps/software programs:  

    Acceleread App - use the free version of this app for an introduction to the process of and skills needed for speed reading.

    Spreeder:  a free online speed reading software where you can copy your own text and practice reading it with custom speed and grouping (set speed and grouping preference in “settings” under the passage) - I have no experience with the paid version of this program.  I think the free version should be fine for practicing. Copy and paste portions of  these Newspapers and Magazines The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Scientific American, The Atlantic Monthly, or The New Yorker into Spreeder and read them for speed and comprehension.  While reading, determine the purpose, main point and tone of each article. . (You may eventually want to copy and paste the article you select into Spreeder to practice reading it at the speed needed for the ACT.)  A reading speed of at least 300 wpm is needed to get through the ACT.  This reading speed is also important to get through the large amount of reading that is required in college.

    Sandy Aprahamian, Principal, EDNavigators LLC

    The Key to Higher Level Reading and Higher SAT and ACT Scores

    ReadingHaving taught hundreds of students how to read and having worked with students up to grade 12 on reading, I have found most high school students to be breaking down on reading at the same place in the process. Background on Reading:

    There are four cueing systems of reading:

    1. Graphophonic (Sound - the reader must be able to decode letter sounds)
    2. Syntactic (Structure - the reader must understand the rules of language)
    3. Semantic (Meaning - the reader must be able to relate material read to material already known)
    4. Pragmatic (Purpose -the reader must understand the culture and social purpose for which language is used)

    Early in elementary school, most students reach success with the first two components of the cueing system.  When given an appropriate leveled piece to read, they can “read” it.

    For higher level reading, students need to master the semantic and pragmatic cueing systems. This is where middle school and high school students often run in to trouble. These skills take time, practice and exposure to many topics and genres. The semantic cueing system requires background knowledge.  In order to find a logical place for the freshly read information in his/her brain, the reader must have a general idea about the topic being presented.  The pragmatic cueing system also requires life experience and strong mental processing. The purpose must be clear. Semantic and pragmatic cueing require higher level thinking and the ability to synthesize and evaluate material while reading. To master semantic cueing and pragmatic cueing, students need life experience, intellectual conversation and exposure to various topics.  It comes with time and practice.

    The best way to become proficient with the semantic and pragmatic cueing systems and to become a better reader in general is to read often.

    Middle and high school students, try these reading steps to improve your semantic and pragmatic cueing systems and get more out of your reading

    1. Understand that the book/article is assigned for a purpose.  There is something to be gained by reading it or it would not be assigned reading.  - Ask the teacher if the purpose is not clear.
    2. Look at the copyright page and read any introductory information available (back cover, front flap, introductory blurb…)
    3. Search the internet for information about the time period when the book or article was written and the time period when the story takes place.
    4. Do a quick internet search on the author.  Get a feel for where the author is coming from physically, mentally and intellectually.
    5. Download the audio version of the book if the book is a challenge to get through.  Try listening to the book while walking. (physical exercise improves brain function - and keeps you alert and awake)
    6. Pause and think about what is being read.  ask yourself… Can you relate to it?  Do you agree/disagree with concepts and characters?  Is it in line with something you read previously? Do you want to understand more about it?  Do you like the writers style?
    7. Look up unknown vocabulary words and concepts as they come up.  Just like in math, in reading missing one concept can lead to a misunderstanding of what lies ahead.

    The next challenge in mastering the reading sections of standardized tests (and college level reading) is reading speed.  Again, this takes practice.  The more someone reads, the faster they get. In my next blog post, I will provide suggestions for increasing reading speed.

    Sandy Aprahamian, EDNavigators LLC

    Ten Things to Know About the New SAT

    1. New SATIt looks a LOT like the current ACT
    2. It is designed to be very challenging emphasizing critical thinking and rigorous standards
    3. The total possible points will be 1600:  800 Verbal(Reading and Writing) and 800 Quantitative (Math and Science)
    4. Calculators will not be permitted for a portion of the Math Section
    5. Science concepts will be tested in both the reading and the math sections
    6. Vocabulary will be tested in context in both the reading and the writing sections
    7. The writing section will have three scores: Reading, Analysis and Writing
    8. The reading section will be more complex than the current ACT
    9. The writing section will be optional (according to The College Board, not necessarily the colleges themselves)
    10. Compared to the Current SAT
    • The Math section will put more focus on Algebra and less focus on Geometry and will require more conceptual understanding
    • A deeper understanding of Algebra 2 and Trigonometry will be needed
    • There will be no guessing penalty
    • There will be no experimental section
    • There will be five sections rather than ten
    •  Reading and Writing will focus more on rhetoric and evidence based reading and less on grammar.

    Class of 2017 Testing Timeline