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Important SAT and ACT Deadlines for Seniors

Important SAT and ACT Deadlines

Senior year has started, and you want to take one more ACT or SAT before applying to college. When should you take the test to be sure that your scores will make it to colleges on time?

Before you decide on a test date, make sure you check the application deadlines for your schools. Early Decision and Early Action applications are typically due in November, while regular decision applications are often due in December or early January. Some schools will accept ACT and SAT results after the application deadline has passed; however, you should verify this on the college’s admissions website. Many schools will accept results from November test dates for Early Decision/Action applications and January for regular applications. Some schools will accept test scores from as late as February for regular decision applicants.

To be safe, if you are applying for early admission in fall of 2019, the latest ACT you should take is October 26, and the latest SAT you should take is November 2. For regular decision applicants, the latest ACT you should take is February 8 and the latest SAT is December 7.

Just because these are the latest tests you can take does not mean that they are the best test dates for your specific situation. For colleges to receive your scores on time for those tests, they must be submitted on test day. Otherwise, the ACT takes about two weeks to provide you with a copy of your scores, and the SAT takes about three weeks. From there, it takes an additional two weeks to send those scores to the colleges you are applying to unless you pay extra for rush reporting.

We recommend that you take the test on the earliest date possible that provides you with some time to prepare. This provides you with the opportunity to register for an additional test date if the first one does not go as well as you were hoping. The test dates, registration deadlines, and late registration deadlines are specified in the table below: