ACT & SAT During the Absolute Craziness of a Global Pandemic: PT1 "What you need to know FT. Erudite Tutors"

This College Application season is unlike any we’ve ever seen? Feeling lost?  I know that’s how I feel as I too enter the College Application Process. And with standardized testing getting cancelled left and right, the craziness of the pandemic seems to only heighten our anxiety in a rather stressful time for many high school seniors. 
But no need to panic!
We’ve got you! I’ve worked alongside an amazing group of women and well……sit back, relax, and learn all you need to know this SAT and ACT testing season from this FANTABULOUS guest post featuring Erudite Tutors! 



ACT & SAT During the Absolute Craziness of a Global Pandemic Part 1

A global pandemic wasn’t on anyone’s to do list and it’s taken a bit of 2020 with it for all of us. Seniors are missing out on time honored traditions and all of our students have lost as much as a full semester of anticipated education. This is going to have lasting implications that none of us can fully predict, but I’d like to shed a little bit of light onto one huge, scary topic: ACT and SAT scores. 

We’ve all heard that Universities are dropping requirements for the ACT and SAT this fall and rumors that it may become more permanent or at least extend to the fall applications in 2021. 

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You may be a student who is frustrated because you spent eons studying and testing to raise your score (and now it doesn’t count??) or one who is excited because that elusive acceptance grade hasn’t been achievable for you. You may be planning on taking a gap year and wondering if you should be taking the test or letting that headache go, wishing you had a bit more information. 

I don’t have all of the answers, but after 15 years of working with students on these monster tests, I do have some insight into the situation. Let’s dig into the implications for the score requirements being waved and what it will mean for Juniors and Seniors alike.

Universities are fielding questions right and left from prospective and accepted students alike. They are being positively bombarded and needed to find a way to respond that appeased the crowds and made certain that they weren’t missing out on any applicants that they might want in their student body. This gave them an opportunity to see all of the applications regardless of the test scores or lack thereof so that when one comes across their desk that is outstanding in all other areas they have already created a policy that allows them to accept this student without breaking policy. Their enrollment is down in 2020 and, as we all know, Universities will be in dire need to get as many of the best applicants that they can.

However, this does not necessarily mean that they will be treating all students equally. When a Senior applies for this fall and does not include an admission worthy test score along with their application this means one of two things: 
   


  1. The applicant did not take the ACT or SAT at all. For Seniors, this means that you were not diligent enough to have your tests completed with admission worthy scores by the spring of the application year. (And this happens sometimes to the best of us!) When placed beside an applicant who was proactive enough to have that test taken and aced before 2020, this doesn’t speak to the level of foresight and commitment that most Universities would like to see in students. Planning ahead and commitment to your education is a predictor of a successful, graduating student. However, colleges do acknowledge that there are forces beyond your control and many things can pose as significant obstacles on their college applications process.  
  2. The applicant took the exam but did not receive an admissions worthy score. While the student may have been able to raise their score given additional opportunities, there is never a guarantee that this will happen! Universities have a minimum score requirement for a reason and they are not suddenly ready to accept students who cannot achieve that score just because there was a short term health emergency.

Harvard recently released a Special Message for High School Juniors and in it they write:

    “We know that there are fewer opportunities to take the SAT or ACT given the cancellations to date. This means that many students may not be able to take 
these tests more than once. The fact is that there are diminishing returns in taking these tests multiple times, and we hope students will not feel compelled to do so now or in the 
future”

Think of it in terms of AP classes. If you are offered the opportunity to take an AP course, you will choose to take the course if a University education is your ultimate goal. We all know how good that looks on your college application! Therefore, when an admissions officer sees an application without any AP courses, they feel that it is safe to assume that you were never offered the opportunity to take one. The same goes for these tests. If you had a high score you would absolutely have reported it to them, so without a score it speaks as a low score. Unless, of course, you were not offered such an opportunity.

However, DON’T PANIC if you’re reading this and you haven’t achieved an admissions worth score and still want to attend a University in the near future! I have some tips and tricks and helpful alternatives (even if getting the score you need just isn’t feasible!) coming at you in the next post. 

Reference:
https://college.harvard.edu/about/news-announcements/special-message-high-school-juniors-applying-harvard

Liked the article?
Well, get to know the contributing authors!

Deb & Taylor from Erudite Tutors met while waiting tables at a pub both knew they had found a kindred spirit in the other. Both loved to gab about education and life-long learning and were avid readers. So when Deb proposed that they start a tutoring company together, it was a no brainer! In 2017 they launched Erudite Tutors. They have spent the past few years building their boutique company and collected a group of what they are certain are the VERY best tutors around. The core of everything they do is based on relationships because they believe that human connection is the life blood of education.

Now in 2020, they and their business partners Beth and Ty are surviving a global pandemic by researching any avenue they can find to still reach students during one of the most difficult academic years that any of them will experience. Both are currently students themselves (Deb is working on her second Masters degree and Taylor on her second Bachelors!) so they have a unique insight into the difficulties facing students through this experience and hope they can do their part to support all of the students going through this crazy time.
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Like the post? Feeling as frazzled as I am this college season….feel free to comment all that and more below! 

I wanted to take the time to thank you all for your patience!!!! And yes, it’s true! I’m back!!!! These past few months I’ve taken a much needed mental health break and have been focusing on getting excited about life and making content again. Quarantine and the pandemic hit me harder than expected and quite frankly I’ve been stuck in a rut. (As one does) But I am so incredibly grateful for you all and I wish you all health and sanity during such a trying time for us all. And ahhh!!! College Applications. And can you believe I’m a senior! Already?! It was just yesterday that I was an “almost” sophomore publishing this blog for the very first time. Ah, how time flies!

Comment below what grade you are in below! And let’s chat. 

Until then….I know during these times it might be a little hard, but I’ll be always smiling and beyoutiful and I’m hopeful that you are too! 

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