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Parents: What To Do When The SAT Is At Capacity

Parents: What To Do When The SAT Is At Capacity

Jun 06, 2017

Four last-minute solutions to ensure your child will sit for the SAT

If you’ve experienced roadblocks getting your child into the New York City SAT exam this year, you’re certainly not alone. Rumor has it that many NYC testing centers are already at maximum capacity for the August 2017 exam. Don’t worry, though — all hope is not lost! Here are four last-minute solutions to ensure your child will sit for the SAT, even if you run into capacity issues:

1. Don’t rule out other locations

Luckily for those living in New York City, other urban centers are just a stone’s throw away. There is also an abundance of smaller outlying towns offering the exam as well (check nearby options in Long Island and Westchester, for example). Between Connecticut, New Jersey, and even Pennsylvania, you’re guaranteed to find a test center that’s still accepting students for the August SAT. While it might not sound easy or ideal to have to travel in order to take the test, options for transportation outside New York are plentiful. Plus, you can utilize the commute time for some last minute review!

2. Request waitlist status ASAP

The SAT provides a waitlist option available on a first come, first served basis for students interested in taking the test. If you’re intent on having your child take the exam on dates that are already at capacity, you’ll want to register for the waitlist as soon as possible. It’s important to note that you can only choose a single testing center and you won’t be notified of any status changes beforehand — therefore, you’ll have to plan on showing up ready to take the exam on test day. If there are enough resources and staff on hand, it’s common for students to get admitted, although not guaranteed. Keep in mind that you’ll also have to pay a waitlist fee of $46 if you are admitted on test day along with the registration fees. If you’re adamant about taking the SAT on a specific date, the waitlist is certainly a good option and frequently works.

3. Register for later dates

It might not be a favorite option if your preparation schedule has got your heart set on a specific test day, but you should certainly consider registering for the SAT at a later date. There are a handful of test dates to choose from and, with tons of exam centers in New York City, you’re guaranteed to get into one. For students who are unable to snag a seat for August, October 7th and November 4th are still viable options, even for rising seniors. Many early action deadlines are November 1st or 15th, so taking the exam and having it rush scored is possible.

Understandably, some may feel that pushing out the test date isn’t a good option as the dates after August hit in the middle of classes and will be harder to find time to study for. If you’re not happy about taking the SAT later, just think about the extra time you’ll get to study and review material. If you have some extra cash to spare and your mind is still made up on the date at capacity, you can combine this with the waitlist option — as mentioned above, waitlist status often results in admittance so this would just give you some much needed extra security.

4. Consider taking the ACT instead

Many people make up their mind about the test they’ll be taking without knowing much about the other option. In the past, students opted to take both the SAT and the ACT with hopes that they would see one score come back significantly higher than the other. While the SAT and ACT are technically different tests, they’ve become increasingly similar in terms of material covered since March of 2016. Because these exams are more similar than they used to be, you shouldn’t expect to see vastly different scores when comparing the two. So for some, the ACT is a good option if you can’t get into an SAT test centers, but there’s no guarantee that you won’t still want/need to take the SAT eventually.

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