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Number of Times Taking the SAT

lookingtoHarvardlookingtoHarvard Registered User Posts: 32 Junior Member
I've been reading different discussions where people have said the more times you take the SAT can hurt your chances. I took it at the end of 7th grade as part of an accelerated program and got high enough (~1150 if it were the New SAT, I'm guesstimating) to get into the local community college. I took it again at the end of Freshmen Year without any preparation whatsoever and got a ~1350. Im looking to take it again in March but I'm worried that if I don't get a near perfect score, which is what is almost needed to get into the college I want, it'll look bad having taken it more than three times. Thoughts??

Replies to: Number of Times Taking the SAT

  • skieuropeskieurope Super Moderator Posts: 22,214 Super Moderator
    For starters, the 7th grade test won't "count" if anyone is counting. I'm personally of the opinion that taking more than 3 times in HS is a waste of time, but I doubt it will hurt you.
  • DerpthuluDerpthulu Registered User Posts: 250 Junior Member
    you can take it 4-6 times in total and you're fine, however some universities are suspicious about students who took it like 6+ times . dont listen to myths, writing it again wont hurt you. you are really good at SAT, pretty sure you will hit 1500 if you start practising, you got 1350 during freshman year ,thats great.
  • greenstudentgreenstudent Registered User Posts: 230 Junior Member
    6 times?? Personally I wouldn't expect people to take it more than 2/3 (not counting the 7th grade one), and once you hit 1500 it really won't make a difference to admissions decisions. If nothing else it's expensive and time consuming, although I doubt having taken it a handful of times will have a particularly adverse effect on admissions.
  • happy1happy1 Registered User Posts: 14,515 Senior Member
    Take it again when you are a junior in HS and study for the exam at that point. Unless you need the SAT earlier for a particular program your time and money would be better spent elsewhere.
  • hophop Registered User Posts: 660 Member
    Rule of thumb (based on responses from many admission folks over the years) is not to take it more than three times,
    or they wonder what else you're missing while you're you're doing endless prep, or conversely, why you're continuing to take it without adequate prep.

    I don't think that taking the old test as a 7th grader would count int the mix.
  • LindsayHarvardLindsayHarvard Registered User Posts: 167 Junior Member
    edited March 18
    I took it three times, the old one once and the new one twice. Unless you have room for significant growth and are willing to put in the effort to make that growth, then I don't see a reason to take it more than once really. You don't need a "near perfect score" to get into most schools, just a decently competitive one. If you dont get the score you want try the ACT instead.
  • WilliamNYCWilliamNYC Registered User Posts: 26 New Member
    3 times is fine. 4 or more might hurt you, especially for the selective schools that require students to submit all their results.
    You don't want to give the impression that 1) you had to try again and again, 2) that you've got nothing better to do than take standardized tests.
  • rvalover7rvalover7 Registered User Posts: 234 Junior Member
    I took it twice. I would definitely not take it more than 3 times. Focus your energy on the ACT or SAT subject tests instead of trying to take the actual SAT a bunch of times.
  • marvin100marvin100 Registered User Posts: 9,013 Senior Member
    people have said the more times you take the SAT can hurt your chances.

    In my 15 years' experience, I say this is unequivocally false.
  • am9799am9799 Registered User Posts: 589 Member
    I so agree with above poster.
    For the vast majority of schools it does NOT matter simply because they don't ask to see your complete SAT history.
    And I don't want to sound judgmental but usually students that have to take the SAT too many times to score high probably they don't have the overall profile for Stanford anyway. So it is not really the fact that they took the SAT four times that's the defining reason they did not get in.
    Having said that, I also don't think taking the SAT too many times is a good thing as it is tiring and distracts for doing other more meaningful things.
  • marvin100marvin100 Registered User Posts: 9,013 Senior Member
    It doesn't even matter for non-score-choice schools. The "three times max" thing is an urban legend.
  • ucfprincessucfprincess Registered User Posts: 105 Junior Member
    I took the old one twice and the new one once; my boyfriend took the old one once and the new one 3 times; my brother took the old one only 4 times; my best friend took the old one 3 times - none of us were ever questioned for how many times we took it. don't worry about it - just take it until you get a score you're happy with and make sure you prepare.
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