What Should You Do if You Have a Low SAT or ACT Score?

If your SAT or ACT is less than you had hoped for, then there are several things that you can do to lower its impact on getting into college. Do not cry, but take productive action immediately. Delaying can cause you to lose your chances of continuing your education.

Take the Test Again

If you have time, then take the test again. You can take the test as many times as you want, and it is often given in different areas near you on different days. Prepare ahead of time by taking an SAT or ACT prep course, using a written study guide or doing online practice tests.

Consider College Choices

Some schools give much less weight to ACT or SAT scores than other colleges. You may even be able to identify schools where taking the test is not a requirement. Make a list of these colleges and apply to those offering the major you desire.

Think About Junior or Community Colleges

Even with a low ACT or SAT score, you may be able to get into a junior or community college. These colleges often offer two-year degrees are a great place to start your higher education journey. Then, transfer as an upperclassman to the college of your choice after proving that you can handle the work.

Get Involved

Many colleges consider your total life when considering if you are a good fit for their college. Take on leadership roles in local youth organizations. Volunteer to help those in your community. Get good grades in school. Participate in extracurricular activities. You may discover that the college you want to attend accepts you anyway because you are a well-rounded student.

Visit With the Admissions Counselor

Almost every college has an admissions counselor assigned to your state or region. Get to know this person for your geographic area. Make a positive impression on them as they have an important say in who gets into the college and who does not. Meeting with them personally gives you a chance to highlight the positives of your school career and why you would make a great fit at their school.

Take Advanced Classes

If your high school transcript is filled with high grades from advanced classes, then the college is more likely to overlook a low ACT or SAT score. Likewise, if you live in an area where you get to choose which high school to attend, choose the ones that have a reputation for rigorous academics.

If you receive a low ACT or SAT score, take a deep breath because it is not the end of the world. Take the test again, and take tough classes in high school. Become the best well-rounded student that you can.

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