Both the SAT and ACT are standardized tests used to assess a student’s abilities, usually before they head into higher education. These test scores are required by nearly all schools throughout the country. See how they compare and why testing prep can help.


The ACT stands for American College Testing, and it consists of math, science, English, and reading. The test is scored anywhere from 1 to 36 and is based on the average results of each section.


The SAT stands for Scholastic Aptitude Test and consists of reading, language, and math. Scored from 400 to 1,600, the test is four sections, including math both with and without a calculator.


The Practice SATs are generally given in 10th or 11th grade. They’re a good way for students to get a sense of what their score would be if taking a regular SAT. It may also be required for students applying for a National Merit Scholarship.
Breaking It Down
You can usually submit either the ACT or SAT, meaning there’s no need to submit both. Students can take both tests and then cherry-pick their best one, but a student can get away with only taking one. The ACT is 2 hours and 55 minutes long without the optional writing section while the SAT is 3 hours without the writing section.
Officially, the SAT and ACT do not require you to take the writing section, nor will it count toward an overall score. However, some colleges will require students to take it.

ACT tutoring and ACT prep are available to help students develop test-taking strategies that incorporate everything from mental tricks to game theory. The right SAT prep tutor can help a student begin to see each section in a whole new light.