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Restrictions on how long ago SAT was taken?

RichInPittRichInPitt 1629 replies25 threads Senior Member
I know that College Board used to, and may still, send a note with SAT scores over 5 years ago that they may not still be representative.

But does anyone know of colleges that specifically require a certain recency for SAT test scores?

My daughter took the SAT in March 2018, in 8th grade and scored at a level that may be good enough for college application (yes, we're lucky). She's now in 9th, so she'd be applying Fall 2021 for 2022 entry. That means her scores will be about 3.5 years old when the applications go in.

It was on the new SAT, so being a previous format isn't an issue, and I don't see CB re-designing the test yet again before she applies. I can't find specific requirements on the 5 potential colleges I've checked, but was wondering if anyone else has run into them.
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Replies to: Restrictions on how long ago SAT was taken?

  • happymomof1happymomof1 29905 replies178 threads Senior Member
    When she gets to the point of actually applying to colleges, that will be the time to worry about this. By then she may only be looking at no-test places anyway, and not need an SAT score at all.

    That said, if she had a really good SAT score in 8th grade, chances are she'll have an 11th grade PSAT score in the National Merit Scholarship Finalist range, and will have to take the SAT to qualify for NMSF status.
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  • bopperbopper 14205 replies100 threadsForum Champion CWRU Forum Champion
    I agree with @happymomof1 She will need to take the PSAT in 11th and then an SAT after that.
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  • wis75wis75 14214 replies64 threads Senior Member
    Agree with the above. She'll want those super high test scores from later in HS, not just good enough ones. Son also did well in the Talent Search testing in middle school and did extremely well with his later HS scores without any studying (2400 SAT). For your D it will be worth taking to become a NM finalist and won't involve much time or money. Be warned- getting into some schools requires more than perfect test scores since there are far too many elite students for the spaces available. High test scores can mean merit money from some schools.
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  • payn4wardpayn4ward 3190 replies13 threads Senior Member
    I would assume the colleges want scores from high school years. Some specifically say that they want scores from Junior year or later. You will have to ask individual colleges on their preference/requirements.
    Many public high schools offer or mandate the students to take ACT or SAT during Junior year for free, so chances are that she may have to take one anyway.

    If it is only for the NMF purposes, she can send SAT score from the fall of her 10th grade year to December of her senior year for confirmation, so there is a timespan that she can retake the SAT or ACT (after a recent change she can get confirmation with ACT score.)

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  • RichInPittRichInPitt 1629 replies25 threads Senior Member
    "Some specifically say that they want scores from Junior year or later. "

    Can you provide a link to these? That's what I'm looking for but have never found such a requirement.
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  • RichInPittRichInPitt 1629 replies25 threads Senior Member
    " Be warned- getting into some schools requires more than perfect test scores since there are far too many elite students for the spaces available. "

    Yes., that's why I would prefer to invest her time in other efforts (USAMO qualifying, for example), rather than studying for SATs. And why the difference between >1550 in 8th grade and what she may do later has marginal additional value, if any, vs. the alternative investments in time.

    I do know there is no "requirement" to take any of the tests by her school.

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  • thumper1thumper1 76104 replies3356 threads Senior Member
    @RichInPitt

    Listen again.

    When your daughter is in 11th grade, it would be smart to take the PSAT test in October of her junior year. If she scores sufficiently high, this could put her in the running for national merit status. That could open the doors to some scholarship money and also merit awards at some colleges. To gain NM finalist status, she would need to take the SAT again, I believe. The 8th grade one would not count for that, I don’t think.

    So...if she didn’t really prep for the 8th grade one....then just don’t worry. Sign her up for the PSAT in 11th grade and see where she scores. Then go from there.
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  • TomSrOfBostonTomSrOfBoston 15082 replies1021 threads Senior Member
    On 5/22/2018 you posted:
    College Board automatically deletes any scores before 9th grade - I don't know if ACT does the same. They're not at all reflective of current performance when applying to college.
    I am unsure why you are asking this question now.
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  • skieuropeskieurope 40110 replies7416 threads Super Moderator
    College Board automatically deletes any scores before 9th grade
    Unless you tell them not to. I assume the OP told them not to.
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  • lostaccountlostaccount 5331 replies90 threads Senior Member
    I'm not sure why people are so quick to object to your question. Maybe you should call them and ask them to retain them. Then send a letter/email as follow up -I've known about too many "mistakes" to trust them without sending a written confirmation of the conversation and asking for a reply for the record. Then when the time comes, you can decide or ask the schools if they are acceptable.
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  • mommdcmommdc 11654 replies31 threads Senior Member
    If she got a good SAT score in 8th grade, she should naturally get a higher score in 11th grade just because her reading level and math knowledge should be higher.

    She doesn't have to study now, in junior year she can do some timed PSAT and/or SAT practice tests and see how she does.
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  • mom2andmom2and 2980 replies20 threads Senior Member
    If she took the SAT for a talent search and did well, she will likely do as well if not better on the SAT in 11th or 12th grade. If she got a perfect score, then that would be a reason to not re-test. But unless that is the case, it makes sense to re-take unless she is looking at schools for which her 8th grade scores put her at the top of the applicant pool. I think most colleges really look for scores taken in HS, but 8th grade scores are still within the five-year window. You would have to ask the colleges themselves.

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  • roycroftmomroycroftmom 3285 replies39 threads Senior Member
    Admissions committees are assessing the current academic performance of applicants. Unless you have a very good reason for not supplying current information, failure to do so will disadvantage you.
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  • shuttlebusshuttlebus 496 replies1 threads Member
    edited January 2019
    My kid used his SAT II Subject Test scores from 8th grade when applying to schools. I did have to write to the College Board to have his scores retained. It was not an issue at any of the schools he applied to and he was accepted everywhere he applied.

    At the time he applied to schools, the only college that we found that required standardized tests from junior year was Carnegie Mellon. I don't think they have this stipulation any longer.
    edited January 2019
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  • twoinanddonetwoinanddone 23661 replies17 threads Senior Member
    Some states give the SAT or ACT as a NCLB test in 11th grade, and you can send those scores.

    All you can do now is request that the score be saved. Anything can change in the next 4 years, so even if we say 'sure, you can use those scores in 4 years' that may not hold. And if even one school she wants to go to requires/will require a 'fresh' SAT score, she's going to have to retake it or give up on that school.

    Seems like a lot of guessing and taking chances to avoid re-taking the SAT which seems to have been no big deal to take last year.
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  • blossomblossom 10060 replies9 threads Senior Member
    I have never seen an 8th grade high scorer whose scores didn't go up even higher by junior year. (And yes, CTY tracks this). So I can't imagine jumping through a lot of hoops to avoid a three hour commitment junior year. Your D won't have to study if she's a solid test taker, and you won't have to worry that the rules are going to change midway.

    For good test takers, it's really not a big deal.
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  • MaterSMaterS 1838 replies51 threads Senior Member
    @blossom There were always perfect scores for 8th graders at our CTY ceremonies. Thus no room for improvement.
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  • blossomblossom 10060 replies9 threads Senior Member
    OP- does your D have a perfect score?

    Mater- I met several of the perfect 8th grades scorers over the years. None of them would have worried about taking the SAT again, and none of them would need to worry about test prep!
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  • silverpurplesilverpurple 189 replies42 threads Junior Member
    If her score was in the 99 percentile range i would hope one can use it and not retake it. You got me thinking about the obsolescence of my daughter’s 10th grade SAT. She got a 1540 and we assumed she was one and done. I will start my own thread as I hope it is not obsolete.
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  • MaterSMaterS 1838 replies51 threads Senior Member
    @blossom Just a sore point for me. Getting a top score isn't a fluke like a monkey typing a novel. Anyone teaching high school should know that. 3 hours and $50 is still a waste of time.
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