Besides the SAT itself, you can also take the SAT Subject Tests. These tests are administered by the College Board. Unlike the regular SAT, SAT Subject Tests focus on specific areas of interest.
Here are five reasons to take the SAT Subject Tests.
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Stand Out To Admissions Boards
Admissions boards are looking for every piece of information they can get to know who you are.
Besides regular standardized test scores, high school transcripts, essays, etc., Subject Tests can provide insight into you too. If there are certain Subject Tests you’ve studied for and scored high with, send those over.
They’ll demonstrate your commitment to learning and diving into certain areas of knowledge. All of that information works in your favor. If you’ve taken one or two of those tests before graduation, don’t be scared to submit the results over.
SAT Subject Tests Illustrate Your Interests
College admission boards are like sports teams; every year, they have to build an entirely new class from scratch.
They are interested in building a broad class that fills many different kinds of spots. Submitting Subject Test results to them provides a metric that’s useful. They can assess your strengths when it comes to specific subjects, showcasing your major potential.
For example, let’s say you take the SAT Math Level 1 and SAT Physics subject tests and score well:
- An admissions board can make the assumption that those areas interest you and can translate into an engineering major.
- If they have a strong engineering program, then you’d be a great candidate to admit for filling in a spot there.
Earn Prerequisite Credits Early
Some colleges will use Subject Test results to place students into corresponding courses when selecting them.
If you decide to take one, or several, then chances are strong that you can use your scores to bypass taking similar classes your freshman year. You may be able to automatically earn credits for introductory-level classes and skip them for higher-level equivalents.
If you know your desired major already and want to skip the preliminaries, then think about taking a Subject Test that can give you that credit. Also, make sure to check if the schools you’re interested in have that policy in place.
Showcase What You Know Outside of Class
Let’s say that you’re interested in taking a particular Subject Test but can’t prepare for it during normal school hours.
Let’s say that you have to take summer classes, weekend classes, or even online courses on your own time. If you do that, and score well on that corresponding test, then let schools know.
They’ll see that not only did you pick up the necessary knowledge, but that you found the determination to do it on your own. That dedication shows focus and passion; two attributes they want from every potential applicant.
Showcase Your Strengths
Certain kinds of students especially benefit from good SAT Subject Test results.
First, ESL students:
- If English is your second language, then a high SAT Subject Score demonstrates your ability to succeed in subjects that don’t entirely depend on a master of the English language.
- For schools with strong STEM-based programs, they will see you as a potential asset to recruit.
Second, International students:
- Like ESL students, high SAT Subject Test scores demonstrate your ability to succeed in non-English centric courses.
- They also show your willingness to learn outside of your native language.
- You can also demonstrate how well you’ve learned the material against other candidates from across the globe.
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SAT Subject Tests FAQ
What’s the biggest difference between the SAT and SAT Subject Tests?
Unlike the regular SAT, SAT Subject Tests focus on specific areas of interest.
How do Subject Tests help with college admissions?
Admissions boards are looking for every piece of information they can get to know who you are. The test themselves demonstrate your commitment to learning and diving into certain areas of knowledge.
Can I earn college credits?
You may be able to automatically earn credits for introductory-level classes and skip them for higher-level equivalents.
If English is my second language, should I still take them?
If English is your second language, then a high SAT Subject Score demonstrates your ability to succeed in subjects that don’t entirely depend on a master of the English language.