ACT vs SAT: What Colorado Students Need To Know

In 2015, the Colorado state Department of Education made the decision to switch from the ACT to the SAT.

What does this mean for Colorado high school students?

Colorado had been using the ACT since 2001. In 2014 alone, 55,000 Colorado students took the ACT while only 6,500 took the SAT. Many school district superintendents pushed to keep the ACT because they viewed it as a useful common measurement from school-to-school, school district-to-school district and from year-to-year. Most colleges and universities will accept either, including all Colorado colleges and universities. The SAT has a reputation for being more focused on critical thinking and reasoning while the ACT is often viewed as more of a fact-recall test.

Officially beginning in 2017, the Colorado state Department of Education will requiring the SAT be taken by all high school juniors. The state will also require that all sophomores take the PSAT. The SAT will also replace the PARCC English and math tests that juniors had been required to take in the spring of 2015. State officials stated the switch was made because the PSAT and SAT are more in line with the Common Core language arts and math standards, which Colorado has also adopted. Officials also felt the common thread between PSAT and SAT would be useful for recognizing areas where students need more focus, which in turn would help teachers address gaps in knowledge. College Board, the company that provides the SAT, also promised free resources to students, such as personalized online test practice through Khan Academy and an app that provides SAT questions of the day. The transition will also save the state nearly $8 million over the next five years. The switch was unanimously voted on by a panel of 15 members which included superintendents, district assessment coordinators, and content specialists.

All Colorado students are free to take either the SAT or the ACT. However, the state of Colorado will only pay for the SAT.

The SAT and the PSAT will be offered for free on a school day in the spring of 2017; the SAT on April 11th and the PSAT on the 11th or 12th depending on the district.

You can register to take the ACT, or the SAT on a different date, by following the links below.

Leading Learners is also hosting ACT and SAT Boot Camps to help you to achieve your highest score!

Call 970-226-8704 today for more information!


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