SAT: Rinse and Repeat, Pt 2 of 2

It will come as no surprise that your next step is to strengthen the
weaknesses that PSAT feedback reveals before you take the SAT and repeat your mistakes.
In the expression “Rinse and Repeat,” that’s the “Rinse.”

Now for the “Repeat.”

The SAT is given annually in
March,
May,
June,
August,
October,
November, and
December.
You could certainly take it in November or December soon after taking the PSAT if you wish, but you won’t get the same feedback from the tests on those dates that you got from the PSAT. To get that level of feedback you’ll have to wait for March.


Allow me to explain.


When you register to take the SAT, you’re paying to be allowed to take the test, to have the College Board score it, to send your scores to prospective colleges if you wish, and to receive a “Score Report”. You’ll find an
example of a score report below. Examine it closely and compare it to the feedback you received when you took the PSAT. Then continue reading.

The Student Answer Service
The Student Answer Service is available (at additional cost) for SAT’s given in November, December, June, and August and for any state sponsored tests such as the New Hampshire and Maine tests given in public high schools as statewide assessments. These “state” SAT tests are given after the national SAT in mid-March. Below you will find a sample page from a SAT Student Answer Service report.

Looks good doesn’t it? In fact it looks very much like PSAT feedback – WITH ONE IMPORTANT DIFFERENCE!
On the PSAT, each “question #” was a link which provided you with answers and explanations. That is not true here. The “question #s” are not links. The Student Answer Service does not allow you to see questions or answer explanations. So, is it worth the money?
Well it’s better than an SAT Score Report, but not by much.

The Question and Answer service is available ( at additional cost) for SAT’s given in October, March (the national test not the state-sponsored test), and May. The feedback provided is exactly the same as on the PSAT where every “question #” is a link which allows you to see both questions and answer explanations. This is the maximum feedback you can get for the SAT, so this is the service you want.

How Rinse and Repeat Works

1) Take the PSAT in October of 11th grade, then rinse and repeat.
2) Take the SAT in March (the national test is on March 14, 2020), then rinse and repeat.
3) Take the SAT in May, then rinse and repeat.
4) Take the SAT for the final time in August.

For most students, the August test will mark the end of college admissions testing. Some might prefer to take the test again in October or November of the senior year. Many will find this unnecessary. It’s up to you.


Finally, what about the ACT?
The ACT is offered in February, April, June, July, September, October, and December.
The ACT TIR (Test Information Release) is available (for an additional fee) for tests in April, June, and December. It’s the equivalent of the SAT Question & Answer Service. The ACT doesn’t offer any other intermediate feedback equivalent to the SAT’s Student Answer Service.