SAT should I retake it?

Hello all,
I have a 1490 superscore. I think I can get it up a little bit 10-30 points if possible. I have really really great gpa and coursloard, letters, ecs etc. I want to apply to schools like uchicago, upenn and stanford. Also, have less competitive schools. I have two weeks till next sat. I am already very busy.

Should i retake it or move on?

Are you an underrepresented minority? Do you have an EC of national acclaim? Are you a legacy to any of these schools and your family gives them substantial $? Are you a recruited athlete?

If the answer is a “no” to all of these questions, the chances of getting in to the 3 schools you listed with a 1490 are very small. I hope I am wrong and you beat the odds.

well. that is not the information i have seen. I am in the range or close for most of those schools. Kids who got into those schools from my highschool had lower gpas than me and similar scores.

you also didn’t really answer my question… should i retake it or not?

How many times have you already taken it?

I believe the 1490 is below the median for classes of 2024 and 2025 at Penn and Chicago, so I probably wouldn’t send the test score to those schools unless you are a URM, but of course I don’t have the full picture of your application.

Looks about the median at Stanford for class of 2024 per the CDS.

Do you feel the 1490 strengthens your app?

If you are prepared for the SAT in two weeks and would rather try to get a score that’s at or above the median so you can apply with the scores, go ahead and spend the 3.5 hours.

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You have to realize that because of “holistic” admissions, the reported ranges for SAT scores are skewed lower than they really are for students who are non URM, legacy, donor, or recruited athlete. For this reason, your scores need to be at or above 75% for that school, unless you have a hook or a spike.

That being said, a score substantially higher than a 1490 might help. But I think that it’s very tough to bring a score up from say a 1490 to a 1550. The incremental yield from extra prep/tutoring would be small, once you hit that range. So if you decide to do this, perhaps it would be best to work with an experienced professional SAT prep tutor for the next two weeks.

If it were me, I’d say that 1490 is good enough, and proceed with your applications.

do you think i wwould be better off going test optional?

Yes apply TO if you aren’t hooked and aren’t at or above the median scores of admitted or matriculated students. BUT I don’t have full view of your app and there can be nuances…what does your HS GC say?

Ask yourself whether the score strengthens your app. Also, is there other information stronger than the SAT scores….such as AP test scores?

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10-30 points additional won’t really have any substantial impact on your chances at those schools in my opinion. I would not retake unless you realistically think you can get 1550+, at which point there is some slight additional value in a test score for the rest of your application in my opinion.

Test optional? Hard to say without knowing the whole of your application and your demographic - and even then I am not sure that any of us could give too informed an opinion. Test scores are extremely high for U Chicago especially. My gut feel is that if the rest of your application is really in the running for admittance at the schools you mentioned (and unfortunately there is no way to know this), and you are not a “hooked” candidate, TO might be the way to go. If you are not in the running anyway, the absence of a test score won’t make a difference of course.

No one can tell you for sure whether to submit, so accept my best wishes for success with whichever way you go.