September 4, 2019

The Study Overseas Information Evening held at Ascham School last week drew crowds of keen students and parents interested in learning more about post-secondary school options. Eleven US universities were represented by admission staff from the institutions and/or local alumni.

Universities represented at the expo on the night included: American Musical and Dramatic Academy, Boston University, Cornell University, Harvard University, Northwestern University, Princeton University, Rider University, Southern Utah University, Transylvania University, University of California Berkeley, University of Michigan, and Yale University.

The event was set up in an expo-style setting which allowed parents and students to speak to the respective university representatives. Both Southern Utah University and...

June 28, 2019

Last year the US welcomed over one million international students to its colleges and universities. As part of the undergraduate application requirement for nearly all four year institutions, students need to submit a standardised test score, either the SAT (formerly known as the Scholastic Aptitude Test) or the American College Test, ACT, both of which are administered privately and outside of the school curriculum.

Receiving US institutions will have capabilities to interpret results from either test and there is no preference from one test over the other but you should always check with the universities to which you anticipate applying to best understand their testing policies.

We encourage students to sit and self-score a trial test for both the SAT and the ACT to identify if one test is...

August 30, 2018

As part of the US undergraduate application requirement to most four year institutions, students are required to submit a standardised test score, either the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) or American College Test (ACT), both of which are administered privately and outside of school hours. Both tests are assessing competencies in comprehensive reading and writing and maths – the ACT also has a testing section on science which does require knowledge in the subject matter, however, many of the questions are analysis and interpretation based. Both tests have an optional writing component required for admission purposes by some institutions.

The College Board, who administers the SAT, announced in February 2017 that it will be reducing SAT testing dates outside of the US from six to four per ye...

July 26, 2018

If you are a current year 11 student click here

Following my recent article highlighting the changes in the new SAT, let's now look into optional standardised tests required for admission purposes by some US institutions. These tests, specifically the essay or writing component offered by the SAT and/or the ACT as well as the SAT Subject Tests are not required by all institutions.

Writing component

As there is no centralised application process blanketing the 4,000 degree granting institutions in the US, individual institutions are able to determine if the SAT or ACT writing component is required for admission purposes. The tests are 50 or 40 minutes respectively and assess a student’s ability to read a passage and demonstrate an understanding by constructing a persuasive argument a...

May 2, 2017

As part of the US undergraduate application requirement to most four year institutions, students are required to submit a standardised test score, either the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) or American College Test (ACT), both of which are administered privately and outside of school hours. Both tests are assessing competencies in comprehensive reading and writing and maths – the ACT also has a testing section on science which does require knowledge in the subject matter, however, many of the questions are analysis and interpretation based. Both tests have an optional writing component required for admission purposes by some institutions.

The College Board, who administers the SAT, announced in February 2017 that it will be reducing SAT testing dates outside of the US from six to four per ye...

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