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SAT and ACT Test Dates for 2024-25: When Should You Test?

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    The SAT and ACT are both administered seven times a year. For students interested in taking both exams, don’t worry! The SAT and ACT test dates don’t conflict with one another. That said, if you are interested in taking one or even both of these tests, you’ll need to plan ahead! 

    In this article, we will provide you with a comprehensive list of SAT and ACT test dates. We will also review whether you should take the SAT or ACT, in addition to answering questions such as: Why take the SAT? How many times can I take the SAT? And when are SAT test dates? So if you’re looking for SAT study resources or advice on How to Prepare for SAT or ACT Test Day, you’ve come to the right place! 

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    SAT test dates (College Board) 2024-25

    SAT Test Date Registration Deadline Late Registration Deadline
    June 1, 2024 May 16, 2024 May 21, 2024
    August 24, 2024 August 9, 2024 August 13, 2024
    October 5, 2024 September 20, 2024 September 24, 2024
    November 2, 2024 October 18, 2024 October 22, 2024
    December 7, 2024 November 22, 2024 November 26, 2024
    March 8, 2025 February 21, 2025 February 25, 2025
    May 3, 2025 April 18, 2025 April 22, 2025
    June 7, 2025 May 22, 2025 May 27, 2025

    Source: College Board

    As you compare different SAT test dates and locations, do your best to prioritize the registration deadline so you are not subjected to the $30 late fee.

    ACT test dates 2024-25

    ACT Test Date Regular Registration Deadline Late Registration Deadline
    September 14, 2024 August 9, 2024 August 25, 2024
    October 26, 2024 September 20, 2024 October 7, 2024
    December 14, 2024 November 8, 2024 November 22, 2024
    February 8, 2025 January 3, 2025 January 20, 2025
    April 5, 2025 February 28, 2025 March 16, 2025
    June 14, 2025 May 9, 2025 May 26, 2025
    July 12, 2025* June 6, 2025 June 20, 2025

    Source: ACT Test Registration

    As you compare different ACT test dates and locations, do your best to prioritize the registration deadline so you are not subjected to the $36 late fee.

    *No tests are scheduled in New York for July.

    Does your high school offer SAT School Day?

    Some schools offer an “SAT School Day” where students can take the SAT during school hours. This is meant to help students avoid potential transportation issues. It can also be comforting for students to take the exam in a familiar setting. In some cases, participating schools will even offer fee waivers for eligible students. 

    In the spring of 2025, high schools can schedule their Digital SAT School Day on any school day within the testing window from March 3 to April 30, 2025. If you are unsure whether this program is offered by your high school, check in with your guidance counselor for clarification and additional resources.

    SAT school day

    Why take the SAT?

    Standardized test scores can add credibility to your application and help distinguish you from your peers. If you are applying to highly-selective schools such as Ivy League colleges, submitting an impressive SAT score may give you the competitive edge you need! Additionally, scholarships often use standardized test scores to select recipients. Ultimately, this is why you should plan to take the SATs and/or ACTs.

    With many schools bringing back standardized testing requirements, it’s essential to prepare for these exams if you plan to apply to colleges that mandate them. While test-optional policies gained traction during the pandemic, the trend is reversing, and a solid SAT or ACT score can significantly boost your chances of admission, especially at competitive institutions.

    Is it better to take the SAT or ACT?

    While many colleges require standardized testing, you have the option to take the SAT or the ACT. While some students may choose to take both exams, you only need to take one — and colleges don’t have a preference for which!

    While the SAT tends to be more popular on the East and West Coast, the ACT is more popular in the Midwest. This shouldn’t necessarily dictate your decision, though. So feel free to take either test! 

    It’s also worth noting that some students take both exams. This is usually the case if they are applying to highly-selective colleges or want to compare individual test results to see if they have more success with one test format over the other. 

    How many times should you take the SAT and ACT?

    Generally, you should plan to take the SAT and/or ACT two to three times prior to submitting your college applications: once during the Fall of your Junior year and once during the Spring of your Junior year, with the option to take your exam once more (if needed) during the Fall of your Senior year. 

    Make sure you prepare for your exams by following a study schedule and familiarizing yourself with helpful tips for taking the SAT. You’ll also want to register for your test date as soon as possible. This will motivate you to study more and will limit scheduling conflicts.

    Girl taking the SAT

    When to take the SATs

    In conclusion, you should plan to take the SAT during the following: 

    • Fall of Junior year
    • Spring of Junior year
    • Fall of Senior year (if needed)

    Costs associated with the SAT and ACT

    Taking the SAT and ACT is not cheap. We will review the specific costs below. If, however, you are wondering how to take the SAT for free, find out if you are eligible for an SAT fee waiver. There is also an ACT fee waiver available for low-income students.

    How much to take the SAT?

    Currently, it costs $60 to register for the SAT, but the price will increase to $68 for test dates beginning August 24, 2024, and onward. For those registering late, there is a $34 late fee. Regardless of whether you pay the late fee, you still need to register by the “late registration deadline.”

    International students must pay the standard $68 registration fee,along with a fixed regional fee of $43. It is also important to note that international students are not eligible for late registration. For additional SAT financial information, click here.

    How much are ACT tests?

    It costs $68 to take the ACT without Writing and $93 to take the ACT with Writing. If you do not meet the regular registration deadline but are able to meet the late registration deadline, you will be charged a $38 late fee

    It costs significantly more to take the ACT as an international student: $181.50 without Writing and $206.50 with writing. International students are eligible for late registration at an additional rate of $38. For other ACT financial information, click here

    Factors to consider when you pick a test date

    There are several important factors to consider when you pick an SAT or ACT test date. Firstly, how many times do you plan to take the test? Secondly, when are your college application deadlines?

    When are your college and scholarship application deadlines?

    It usually takes about two weeks to receive your test scores and a few more weeks for your results to be sent to colleges. This is why it is important to plan ahead and give yourself plenty of time. Depending on the college, a late test score may result in a disqualified application. Ultimately, this is why you should plan to take your exam no later than two months before your earliest application deadline. If you’re applying to scholarships that require standardized test scores, you’ll want to factor in your scholarship application deadlines as well.

    University of Washington

    Make sure you have enough time to study

    How much time do you need to study? Ideally, you should follow an SAT study plan and schedule template to prepare. If you are taking the SAT or ACT for the second or third time, what is your target score? Realistically, how much time do you need to study to reach this goal?

    You’ll also want to consider whether you have any other important upcoming exams, such as AP or IB tests. You definitely don’t want to double-book yourself! You’ll also want to space out your exams so you can better focus. 

    Finally, make a list of upcoming personal commitments, such as sporting events, family parties, field trips, etc. Then, after considering all of the above factors, start looking at possible test dates!

    Key takeaways and moving forward

    Preparing to take the SAT and ACT is a lot of work! Thankfully, there are plenty of available resources to help you succeed. After you’ve chosen the test date that works best for you, it’s time to start studying! If standardized testing isn’t one of your strengths, or you aren’t pleased with your final score, you may want to research What Colleges Are Test-Optional for 2024? In the meantime, if you have questions about SAT prep or college admissions in general, reach out to learn more about our services

    High school boy taking the SAT

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