Some College Admission Requirements - The Entrance Exam

If your teen plans to continue education after high school, you will need to investigate the college admission requirements that must be met.  Some of these requirements will vary, depending on the college or university your teen is considering. 

However, there is one requirement that is common to most schools, and that is submitting a score from a College Entrance Exam.  These are also referred to as College Admission Tests, and it is very important that you become familiar with the following informaion.

The two exams that are primarily used for college admission purposes are the ACT and the SAT.  Most colleges now will accept a score from either exam, but a few still specifically require one or the other.  Be sure to find out early in the application process which exams are accepted.

In addition to college entrance exams, there are other standardized tests that your high school student will encounter.  Location of testing sites, testing dates, and methods of registration vary from test to test and can be a bit confusing to sort out.   

Below are some of the most common standardized tests, including the college entrance exams, taken by high school students. Each of the exams is given on a national testing date, which means that students all over the country are taking the test on the same date. 

Some of these exams are given at each individual high school campus during school hours and some are given at a centralized testing location away from the high school outside school hours.On-line registration is available for the ACT and the SAT but not for the PSAT/NMSQT.  There is a registration fee for each of the exams.

Click on each individual test or article listed below to find information specific to that exam:


The PSAT/NMSQT is taken during the students' junior year of high school.  It is the qualifying exam for the National Merit Scholarship Program.

The AP (Advanced Placement) exams are a part of the Advanced Placement Program which provides high school students the opportunity to take college level courses while still in high school.

What Is The Difference Between The ACT and SAT?
Many students and their parents aren't clear about the difference between the ACT and SAT, the two major college entrance examinations.  The article below explains the difference in the two tests and answers some frequently asked questions about the ACT in particular.

The College ACT Exams
There comes a time in every college bound person's life when they ask the questions "What is the ACT and how does it impact my future"?

SAT Test Preparation
On March 12, 2005, high school juniors across the country were the first to take the new SAT I test, the standardized testing used in the college admission process.  The new test has three sections: Math, Critical Reading, and Writing.

Use of Calculators on Standardized Tests 
The use of calculators on standardized tests should be given careful consideration.

The one place at your high school where you should be able to go for any and all information about college admission requirements, including entrance exams, is the Guidance Counselor's Office.  Don't hesitate to give them a call or pay them a visit if you have any questions at all about your particular situation.  If you plan to visit, it is probably a good idea to call and make an appointment to ensure that you will have ample time to ask all your questions.

Additional resources on college admission requirements:





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