When is the best time to take the SAT or the ACT? Is there a month when the test is easier? Or–gasp–harder?
The truth of the matter is that test versions are not easier or harder by the month. In other words, there is neither a month for an easy test nor a month for a hard test.
The SAT and the ACT are standardized tests that colleges use to compare results across a number of months. For example, the score Student A receives on the December test should be equitably compared with the score Student B receives on the June test. If there were a difference between test versions, then colleges would not be able to compare scores on tests taken in different months. So don’t believe anyone that claims to know that a test in one month will be easier, or harder, than a test in another month. However, there is a worst month to take the test. The worst month to take the test is the month in which the student is too distracted to focus on testing and stress-free preparation. The worst month is the month in which school work, extracurricular activities and other commitments are so encompassing that there is no time to focus on getting the attitude ready for an aptitude test. For many students, the worst month to take the test is June. May and June can be so full of activities that stress levels run high. Consider what many students have on their plate as the school year ends: final exams, prom, performances, graduation-related activities, sports championships, summer job hunting, etc. With so much on one’s plate, how can someone get ready for the test? The June test is not harder. But the months of May and June can be more stressful than other months which can make the June test more challenging. Take the SAT or ACT when there is the least amount of stress in your life. Since there is no month in which the test will be easier, pick a month when you are free of major distractions. Learn more about CROSSWALK’s SAT and ACT Boot Camp here. CROSSWALK is the Monterey Peninsula’s resource for ACT and SAT prep and academic tutoring in all subjects.