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Do you take SATs in Junior or Senior year?

elizadoo47elizadoo47 Registered User Posts: 42 Junior Member
I'm a parent and I am confused...

My niece in TN took her SATs and ACTs in her junior year, along with all her peers. They began taking them in the fall of their junior year and would take them a few times, so that by the end of their junior year they were comfortable with the test and their scores had (usually) improved. Then they sent their college applications in (end of junior year).

So my daughter, who is 16 and should be a junior, figured she would do what her cousin in TN did. She went and took the SATs a couple of weeks ago. But we are in Florida, and daughter was shocked to see that every other student at the test was a senior (she knew them, it was at her school).

Of course she's panicking because her scores are going to be judged against her 17- and 18- year old test takers who have all had the benefit of another year.


1) How much do your test scores improve from one year (or 9 months) to the next? Do they really go up that much if you take them 6 or 7 months later?

3) Is it worth it for her to take them in the spring? [Answer: depends how well she does on these that she just took, right?]

2) My daughter is graduating a year early even though she is 16...she worked hard over hte summer to earn extra credits to do so. Will colleges allow her to apply even though she is only 16, as long as her grades and test scores are good enough?
Post edited by elizadoo47 on

Replies to: Do you take SATs in Junior or Senior year?

  • bernier93bernier93 Registered User Posts: 191 Junior Member
    What most people do is take their SATs at the END of their Junior year, then again at the beginning of their senior year. Taking them now is fine, but she WILL have to retake them as they are desinged for end of junior year.

    ALso, colleges will accept anyone who's graduated high school... why would she want to graduate early though? I think that would suck, not graduating with your class that you've been with since kindgergarden
  • elizadoo47elizadoo47 Registered User Posts: 42 Junior Member
    D is technically a Senior now (despite her young age), so I guess these test scores do count as her final test scores, if she is applying for fall 2010 admission. I guess if she wants winter 2011 admission she can take the tests in the spring.

    We've moved a bit and daughter has attended a few different schools, and her friends are scattered around the country. She really doesn't have any close friends her age at her school; she does have a few who are a year older than she, and some in college. Her goal has always been to graduate early and she has worked to get the extra credits to do so. Plus, she wants to go on to community college in the summer and take classes there; she prefers the more mature (translation: serious) environment.
  • SDMomof3SDMomof3 Registered User Posts: 363 Member
    NO, it is not mandatory that you take them at the end of your Junior year. If she is satisfied with her scores, then she can be done. My son, a junior, just took them for the first time, with the idea that he would take again in the spring if need be. Many kids wait and take for the first time in the spring of junior year, and then if necessary, retake again in the fall of senior year.
    I'm confused by your daughter's status? You say she should be a junior, but you also said she is graduating early. So is she graduating spring 2010? Is she applying to colleges now? If so, she really can't wait till the spring to take them again.
  • swans004swans004 Registered User Posts: 382 Member
    The usual pattern is to take the SAT for the first time in the spring of the junior year (some take it as early as January, but most wait till May/June), then retake it in the fall of your senior year if desired. Depending on what colleges she is applying to, she may also need to plan to take the SAT subject tests as well. It's not "mandatory" at any point, but students are usually in a position to do their best end of junior/beginning of senior year. Your daughter probably hasn't hit her best score yet, just because of the timing of it.

    I've never heard of any students sending in college applications at the end of their junior year, although I suppose you can. I do know that many colleges are encouraging students to get their applications in well before the applications deadlines so that financial aid isn't exhausted by the time they're accepted! But that usually means applying early in the fall, not in the summer. You can apply at any age, though, so that's not a worry for you!

    Test scores often do improve significantly over time, both with additional school under a student's belt, and taking into account any test prep she's doing. I would wait to see how her scores come out before making any decisions, but it's almost certain that she can improve her scores by taking it in May/June. That way she's giving herself the option of taking it once more in the fall if necessary, but you really don't want to take it MORE than three times.

    Hope that helps a bit, and best of luck to your daughter.
  • thrill3rnit3thrill3rnit3 Registered User Posts: 1,413 Senior Member
    I'm taking it twice junior year and once senior year.
  • diablonecrosdiablonecros Registered User Posts: 159 Junior Member
    You can actually take the SATs even if you're in 9th grade (it doesnt matter what grade you're in). lol I'm like a odd one because I am currently a senior, and just took my very first SAT just this October : ( while all my other friends already took theres and had goodass scores like 2000+ and arent even worrying about it during 12th grade.

    but thankfully, I'm a ELC student, so basically I already got accepted into uc davis, uc sb, and uc irvine, even though my SAT scores will be really bad
This discussion has been closed.