The College Solutions Blog

Valuable insights from Lynn O’Shaughnessy
a nationally recognized college expert.

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February 28, 2013

A New Look is Coming for the SAT

Change is coming to the SAT test. A vice president at the College Board emailed its members this week to announce that the College Board will be redesigning the SAT. This will be the first revamping since 2005 when the essay was added and those infuriating analogies (cake is to icing as a unicycle is to __) were banished. The...
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February 18, 2013

Is There a Perfect Date to Take the ACT or SAT?

A couple of years ago I listened in on a webinar about SAT strategies that really impressed me. The guest speaker was Jeb Applerouth, who runs an eponymous test-prep firm that’s headquartered in Atlanta. Since the webinar, I occasionally visit Applerouth’s blog to see what he’s been writing about standardized testing. Jeb gave me permission to share the following blog...
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December 5, 2012

Comparing Your Teenager’s SAT Scores

A mother recently asked me what constitutes a good SAT scores. I told her that it depends on the caliber of the school. At some colleges a 1600 out of a 2400 score is above average while at other schools, applicants with that kind of score wouldn’t even be seriously considered. At some of the nation’s most prestigious schools, a...
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October 8, 2012

Study for the SAT for Free

Believe it or not,  students do not have to pay a fortune to prepare for the SAT. Enrolling teenagers in a $1,000 or $2,000 program isn’t going to work if they aren’t motivated enough to study. Just using the resources that the College Board makes available for free and/or for a incredibly cheap price, can be all a teenager needs....
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September 26, 2012

Disappointing SAT Test Scores — Again

The College Board released its latest SAT score results this week and the results are once again disappointing. The average score for the reading portion of the SAT is at its lowest level in four decades. The high school seniors in the class of 2012 earned an average reading score of 496 out of a maximum of 800. That represents...
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September 10, 2012

The Difference Between the SAT and ACT

Note: I will be conducting my quarterly college workshops through the University of California, San Diego Extension on Sept. 22 and 29. Please scroll to the bottom of this post to learn more. Lynn O. When deciding whether to take the SAT or ACT test keep this in mind: the ACT AND SAT require different kinds of skills. Some teens...
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August 31, 2012

Boosting Your ACT Score Through Superscoring

As another standardized test season kicks off, ACT test takers should know about ACT superscoring. To understand what superscoring is, here’s some background: Historically, college admission offices used a student’s composite ACT score that’s made up of four underlying categories: English Mathematics Reading Science The test maker averages the four subcores, with each ranging from 1 to 36, to create...
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July 15, 2012

Studying for the SAT for Free

While you can’t take the SAT in the summer, this time of the year is a great time to study for the test when there are fewer distractions. Perhaps that’s why I am getting more questions about SAT and ACT prep. Consequently, I’m devoting today’s post to test prep. I have these two goals: No. 1: I want to emphasize...
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June 12, 2012

Why You Can’t Take the SAT in the Summer

I expect that just about any parent or teenagers reading this post will agree with this statement: the SAT and ACT should be offered in the summer. It’s a no brainer. In the summer students have more time to prepare for the test and they can be better rested before they take it. I’ve always wondered why the test giants...
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May 7, 2012

Answering Your College Questions

Last week people posted questions on The College Solution’s Facebook page that I promised to answer after visiting a regional college conference in Reno. I started chipping away at the questions last week with these two posts: Answering Your SAT and ACT Questions The Realities of Merit Scholarship Facebook Questions Today I am answering questions about admission requirements, SAT/ACT practices...
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