The SAT is traditionally offered once a month during the school year at different high schools across the country.
It is important to plan ahead to find a test center near you and to account for registration deadlines.
Click on the link above to see when the SAT is taking place this school year. The November 5th, 2022 and March 11th, 2023 test dates are taking place at Huntingdon Area HS, so those are usually the recommended times to take it.
When should students take the SAT?
Typically, students looking at college can consider taking the SAT during the spring of their junior year (March, May, June). Then, if they want to improve their score, they can take it again during the fall of their senior year (August, October, November).
Students should take the SAT absolutely no later than December of their senior year if they want to use their score for college applications.
Who should take the SAT?
- Students looking to study STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) or healthcare (Nursing, Physician Assistance, Physical Therapy, Pre-Med, etc.) should plan to take the SAT, as most colleges require test scores for those programs.
- Students looking to apply to selective colleges (schools with a competitive, low acceptance rate) should plan to take the SAT, as it can reflect positively on a student’s college application.
- Many colleges publicly identify the average range of test scores for admitted students, and knowing where you fit in that range is beneficial when applying to schools.
- Students who qualify for an SAT fee waiver (see below) should consider taking the test for the simple reason that it is available to them for free. You have nothing to lose, so why not try?
Ultimately, it is each student’s decision whether or not the SAT is beneficial to their college admissions journey based on what they want to study in college, where they want to apply, and their HS academic record. Many colleges have “test optional” admissions policies, meaning students are not required to report test scores when applying. Learn more about Test Optional Admissions.
For more information and guidance on whether you or your student should consider taking the SAT, please reach out to the HS College & Career Adviser.
Can I get a fee waiver?
Students who receive free/reduced price lunch are eligible for a fee waiver, allowing them to take the test twice for free. Waivers are a digital code of letters/numbers that is specifically assigned to a student. When you enter your code online on your CollegeBoard account while registering for the SAT, it will waive the registration price for 2 exams.
To see if you qualify, or to receive your fee waiver code, stop by the Guidance Office or contact your school counselor or the college & career adviser prior to SAT registration.
For more information and qualifications, see the SAT Fee Waiver Brochure.
How to Register for the SAT
SAT registration is fully online through the CollegeBoard website, including online payment for the $60 registration fee.
- First, click the link here to sign into your CollegeBoard account. If you do not have a CollegeBoard account, click “Create Account” and follow the instructions.
- When creating your account, it is recommended that you use a personal email address rather than your “huntsd.org” school address.
- Decide when and where you will take the SAT. Use the SAT Test Center Search tool to see which test center locations are available near you on each test date.
- Find a picture of yourself to use on your test registration, or take a new photo if needed. See the SAT Photo Requirements to determine what makes a photo acceptable.
- You’ll upload a photo of yourself as part of the registration process. This photo will be used on test day to verify your identity when you check in.
- Find a picture of yourself that matches the photo requirements, and make the file is accessible on the device you are using to register for the test.
- Visit www.sat.org/register to register.
- Input your fee waiver code (if applicable).
- While registering, see the prompt near the top of the page to input your fee waiver code.
- You’ll only need to use a fee waiver code for your first registration. After that, all fee waiver benefits will automatically be delivered to your College Board account.
Preparing for Test Day
After registering for the SAT, start preparing by studying for the test, planning transportation, and gathering your materials.
It is highly recommended that students study for the SAT using free resources, such as Khan Academy’s SAT Prep. This is a great resource that delivers personalized, online SAT test prep by taking a practice quiz or referencing your prior SAT/PSAT scores.
Plan your transportation ahead of time, especially if you are taking the test at a high school you’ve never visited before. The SAT takes place early on Saturday mornings, and test centers follow a strict timeline throughout the day.
- Plan to arrive at your test center by 7:30am in order to check in when doors open at 7:45am.
- Doors close at 8:00am, so you must arrive and check in during that 15-minute period.
- Consider factors such as traffic and parking when making plans.
- Students may drive themselves or students may get dropped off/picked up at the test center. Parents/guardians do not need to be present with the student.
You will need to bring photo ID with you on test day. Most students use their current HAHS school ID or their driver’s license. Read through the ID Requirements to determine which ID you will bring.
If you do not have an acceptable photo ID to use on test day, contact your school counselor ASAP to ask if they can issue you a temporary school ID form with their signature. This can take a while to complete, so plan ahead.
What to Expect on Test Day
The test will begin between 8:00 and 8:30am and will usually conclude around noon. There will be two, brief breaks during the test. Make sure to bring a water bottle and small snacks to keep you going throughout the long morning!
The CollegeBoard website outlines all the information you need to be ready for test day. Read through the resources on their webpage What to Bring and Do on SAT Test Day to make sure you are prepared. Pay special attention to the following articles:
- What to Expect on Test Day
- What to Bring on SAT Test Day
- Prohibited Devices
- ID Requirements
- FAQ for parents
Last Resort: it is test day and something goes wrong.
- If you are running late and believe you will miss the 15-minute check-in window: get there as soon as you are able. Test centers may still let you check in up until testing actually begins (around 8:30am.)
- If you forget something: still arrive and explain your situation when checking in. You may be allowed to reprint your ticket, return home for forgotten items, etc.
- Keep in mind that the site coordinator is allowed to refuse entry if you do not arrive prepared. If that happens, it is okay. You can register for the next test date and try again.