Which SAT II (Subject Tests) Should I Take?

<p>I'm a junior this year, with relatively lofty (yet I'd hope realistic) college goals. This year, I'm trying to get everything together for college applications (e.g. PSAT/NMSQT, SATs, APs, etc.) and I've only recently learned about the SAT II Subject Tests. I don't quite understand their purpose however. It would appear that they're used for "placement" but I'm also not quite sure of the importance of that. What it comes down to is:</p>

<p>What is the purpose of SAT Subject Tests?</p>

<p>How many should I take to be relatively safe no matter where I apply?</p>

<p>How should I choose which one to take?
(for example, I've taken APUSH, grasped the material well and got a 5. Would it be redundant to take the SAT subject test for US History, or would it be beneficial because I'm already well familiarized with the material?)</p>


<p>“What is the purpose of SAT Subject Tests?”
The SAT Subject Test helps to set you aside from other candidates at certain colleges. It is another way for you to show that you acceled beyond the curriculum of a certain class. While some SAT Subject Tests go “hand-in-hand” with certain AP’s, there is usually a difference (slight or great) between the curriculum covered. </p>

<p>“How many should I take to be relatively safe no matter where I apply?”
I, personally, have never heard of a college that requires more than 3. Most selective schools require two, from what I understand. So, if you want to be 100% safe, I guess I would suggest taking 3, although 2 will usually be enough.</p>

<p>“How should I choose which one to take?”
Usually, SAT Subject Tests are taken in May/June after completion of the class they go in line with. However, this is not set in stone, and you could take them anytime an SAT is given. I think you should take SAT Subject Tests in the areas in which you are most comfortable. If you say APUSH was a breeze, then The US History SAT Subject Test should definitely be one you consider taking. I would, however, recommend getting a book to prepare you, as like I said, the curriculum varies slightly from APUSH. I’m sure there are tons of threads on the site saying what books are good. I would also recommend that you take one in mathematics. There are two SAT Math Subject Tests (Math I and Math II). Math II goes into precalculus, while Math I doesn’t, I believe. (Again, please do some research by yourself to validate my points). If you are a strong math student, take math II, if you struggle in math, try math I. Most colleges, to my knowledge, won’t accept both math I and II. Now, if you want to go for a third one, I’d recommend a science. Which science are you best at? Was AP Bio impossible for you? Was AP Chem the easiest class you’ve ever taken? Was AP Physics even easier? Keep this in mind when deciding. If science isn’t “your thing,” how about a language? Are you amazing in a foreign language? Maybe you should look into one of those. Again, the best thing I can recommend for you is: PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE. Buy a book. Do practice tests. This will help you! Trust me!</p>

<p>Good luck, and I hope I was helpful to you

  • James</p>