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Can You Afford to Sit Out the ACT/SAT?

Author: Best Brains Mar 22, 2021

A group of high school students sitting on the stairs and looking at their homework.

Sometimes it feels like a child's entire life is just one long build up to taking the ACT or the SAT test! And while attending a four-year American college or university is not the best lifepath for everyone, it's always important for our kids to have options, and scoring well on the ACT or SAT opens many paths to success, not the mention builds a strong academic foundation that kids can apply to any area of their life!

Students scheduled to sit their ACT or SAT exams faced a huge hurdle in 2020, with the pandemic and social distancing causing exams to be cancelled, postponed, or offering extremely limited seating. Colleges responded in turn, many, especially state colleges, waiving their ACT/SAT requirements, and even merit-based scholarship qualifications. People have been questioning for years whether the ACTs and SATs are a necessary component of the college application process. Will ACT and SAT requirements continue to drop off in a post-COVID future?

This simple answer is No. Even if some public universities drop the ACTs or SATs, they will still be a major determining factor in deciding which students can attend the more prestigious universities in the US, where competition for spots is fierce and every point matters. Secondly, many merit-based scholarships rely on these scores as an indication of who is deserving of funding. Sitting out these tests can cost a child thousands of dollars in the long run. Finally, many states have turned to the ACTs and SATs in recent years as part of their graduation requirements. Statewide testing can be expensive, both to develop and to proctor. Relying on the ACTs and SATs to measure students' success while continually working on improving the test itself take a huge burden off of their shoulders.

When we think of the ACTs or SATs, we tend to think of a number, but not about what that number represents. For a child to achieve a high test score, it represents so many things. It's a test of their patience and perseverance. It's a measure of their confidence, self-sufficiency, and determination. It represents the depth and breadth of knowledge that they have acquired up to that point. We have always believed that test scores are an indication of success, not the success in itself.

If your child needs help achieving success on their tests, our long-term test prep course can give them the tools they need, either in the classroom or online!