Key details and dates to help you prepare for this year’s test season.
Now that fall has arrived, school is back in full swing and academics are on everyone’s mind. It also means that it’s time to start preparing for testing season. In New York, there are several major tests on the horizon for students of all ages, and it’s important to know the key details in advance. Luckily, Clark has you covered with a breakdown of logistics. Check out this list of the important test dates and details to for the 2017-2018 New York City school year:
College Entrance Exams
What is it: The SAT is a major college entrance exam taken often by juniors and seniors. It is comprised of three parts: reading, math, and writing, and all three parts are combined to result in a maximum score of 2400 (1600 without essay). There is an optional essay section.
When is it: In 2017, the remaining test dates are October 7th, November 4th, and December 2nd. In 2018, exams will take place March 10th, May 5, and June 2nd.
Registration deadlines: Students must register for the exam 4 weeks prior to the test. Late registrations, which incur an additional fee, must be completed approximately 2 weeks prior to the exam. Exact registration deadline dates can be found here.
Fees: The SAT exam costs $46 without the essay portion and $60 with the essay. Registering by phone incurs a $15 fee, and if you need to change your test date or if you register late, you’ll be charged $29. For students admitted to the exam from the waitlist on test day, the fee is $49. It’s free to receive your scores, but additional scoring services do charge fees (see here).
What to know for test day: On test day, bring a no. 2 pencil, a calculator, your admission ticket, and a photo ID with your name matching the name on the admission ticket.
What is it: The ACT is the other major college entrance exam, also taken most frequently by juniors and seniors. In 2010, it surpassed the SAT as the most popular college admissions test with students. It’s also made up of three sections, which include reading, math, English, and science reasoning, with an optional essay section. In contrast to the scoring system of the SAT, the ACT is scored on a scale of 1-36.
When is it: In 2017, remaining dates for the ACT are October 28th and December 9th. In 2018, the exam will be held on April 14th and June 9th (additional tests will take place on February 10th and July 14th, but there are no testing centers in New York that will be hosting these dates).
Registration deadlines: Students must register for the ACT approximately 5 weeks prior to the exam date. Late registration deadlines occur roughly 3 weeks prior and incur an additional fee. Specific dates can be found here.
Fees: The exam costs $46 without the essay portion and $62.50 including the essay. Late registrations incur a $29.50 fee, and students who are admitted to the exam on test day from the waitlist must pay $53. Changing test date or location is $26 each. Receiving scores is free, but additional scoring services do require additional fees, which you can find here.
What to know for test day: On test day, bring at least two no. 2 pencils, a calculator, your admission ticket and a photo ID with matching name.
What is it: The SAT II’s are subject-specific exams most recently referred to simply as SAT Subject Tests. There are 20 different subject exams that students can take, and each is allowed to take 3 subjects per exam date. The SAT II’s are less about logic and reasoning (which is the major focus of the SAT) and more about testing a student’s knowledge of a specific topic. Scoring is on an 800 point scale, and the achievement of a student should be assessed against scores of their peers in the same subject test as raw scores aren’t as straightforward. Most colleges don’t require these scores for admission, but certain selective colleges or specific major applications may ask students to submit results.
When is it: The remaining 2017 SAT II dates are October 7th, November 4th, and December 2nd. In 2018, exams take place on May 5th and June 2nd. The dates are subject-dependent, so be sure to check the full list here to confirm that your subject will be administered on your desired date.
Registration deadlines: Registration deadlines occur about 2 weeks prior to the exam date.
Fees: Registration costs $26 per single test date and an additional $21 per subject. Language tests that include audio are $26. Late registration and change fees are $29, and the waitlist fee is $46. Scores are released for free, but there are additional charges for other scoring services. You can find the full list of fees here.
What to know for test day: On test day, bring at least two no. 2 pencils, your admission ticket and a photo ID with matching name. If your test requires a calculator, be sure to bring it with you as well.
High School Entrance Exams
What is it: The ISEE, or Independent School Entrance Exam, and is taken by students who wish to be admitted to a private middle or high school. The exam is administered in different levels for this reason, with the highest level for 9th graders, the mid-level test for 7th and 8th graders, and the lowest-level test for 5th and 6th graders. Sections of the test include reading comprehension, quantitative reasoning, verbal reasoning, and mathematics achievement, plus an essay that is not scored but is sent to the schools that the student is applying to. Scores vary per level, with the highest scores hovering around and above 900 for each section.
When is it: Test dates vary depending on which ISEE level the student is taking. You can find exam dates for this school year here.
Registration deadlines: Because there are so many test dates, space at testing centers isn’t always as abundant as it is during other exams. Therefore, it’s recommended to register as early as possible to secure your desired date. Registration deadlines officially close two weeks prior to the exam.
Fees: Fees vary depending on the location of the exam. Students can take the exam at a Prometric testing center, in which case the registration fee is $190. Rescheduling the exam will result in a $30 fee 5-14 days prior to the test date and a $75 fee within 5 days of the exam. If rescheduling more than 15 days out from the exam there is no fee. If the student is taking the exam at a different location, they will need to contact their testing location for information about fees. A list of test centers on specific dates for the current school year can be searched here.
What to know for test day: On test day, students will bring their verification letter, a photo ID with a matching name, 4 no. 2 or HB pencils, and 2 erasable black or blue ballpoint pens.
What is it: The SHSAT is the Specialized High School Admission Test. It is administered to 8th and 9th grade students who are applying to a Specialized High School in New York City. It is comprised of two sections, one quantitative and one verbal (the English Language Arts, or ELA section). The scoring system is done on a scale, and students are then ranked by score and assigned to a Specialized High School based on available spots at the school and their score ranking.
When is it: The SHSAT dates remaining in 2017 occur on October 12th, 18th, 21st, 22nd, 29th, and November 4th. The first round of high school applications must be submitted by students in December, and students receive offers from schools in March of 2018. More information on the timeline of the 2017 exams can be found here.
Registration deadlines: Registration occurs in September through October 12th and must be done through the student’s school counselor, who will issue an admission ticket to the test. A full timeline checklist and additional information can be found here.
Fees: The SHSAT is completely free for students to take.
What to know for test day: The admission ticket issued by the student’s school counselor will contain pertinent information for test day, such as test date, time, location, and student ID number. This ticket will need to be brought to the exam, along with no. 2 pencils. A watch is recommended to assist in timing, but not mandatory.
What is it: The ELA test is an exam taken by 3rd through 8th grade students each year in New York City. It’s also known as the New York English Language Arts exam, and is a part of the Common Core test which measures whether students are learning up to standards based on grade-level. Many people use the term “ELA” interchangeably with the Common Core test, which tests more than just English proficiency. It also measures science, reading, social studies, and math skills. Scoring is scaled (referred to as “scale scores”) and divided into four levels of performance. The results are distributed to parents along with information about student strengths and weaknesses noted by the scale scores.
When is it: The ELA portion of the exam takes place in schools between April 10th and April 17th of 2018, and are scored by May 3rd. You can find a comprehensive list of all test dates for the 2018 exams here, along with make up dates and scoring dates for all sections of the Common Core exam.
Registration deadlines: Since all 3rd through 8th grade students are required to take this test, no registration is required and they are simply administered through the student’s school.
Fees: There are no fees associated with the exam.
What to know for test day: The administrator of the exam will communicate any necessary information prior to the day of the test.
Testing time is never stress free, but ensuring you’re prepared for the big day will make it much easier. Being aware of timing, scheduling logistics, and major test-day items will keep you and your child one step ahead of the game, and enable them to focus on studying without worrying about last-minute obstacles unrelated to performance. Keep this list handy and get things done far in advance to guarantee you won’t be scrambling last minute.
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