Posted by Texas OnCourse on Sep 14, 2017 4:21:00 PM

Students often ask themselves, what are the pros and cons between the ACT vs. SAT? It can be confusing to compare the exams side by side and suss out which is the best fit for a student's postsecondary goals.

The chart below summarizes the similarities and differences between the two major college exams.


We do recommend that students take full length practice tests of both to get their feet wet, or even take both tests (both offer fee waivers!).

Check out SAT/ACT prep tips in the Academy

One thing to note is that in the era of COVID-19, many schools have gone “test-optional,” affirming that they will not penalize students for the absence of a standardized test score like the SAT or ACT. Some of those schools are in Texas. Some will remain test-optional even once the pandemic passes.

Another nugget of useful information regarding the SAT was recently released by the College Board: The College Board will no longer offer SAT Subject Tests. (International students can still take them in May and June 2021.) It will also discontinue the optional SAT Essay after the June 2021 administration.

For more information on the SAT and ACT, log onto the Texas OnCourse Academy. Look for the modules under Entrance and Placement Exams. 

And finally, don't miss our everything-you-need-to-know blog, The Basics of Admissions Tests and Placement Exams.

Topics: Applying to College, College Planning, Educators, High School, Entrance Exams