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Standardized Tests

St. Catherine of Siena Academy provides students with various standardized tests to help prepare each student for college admissions tests. All freshmen, sophomores, and juniors take the PSAT. By taking the PSAT as a freshman and a sophomore, it helps the student prepare for her junior year when the PSAT counts toward qualifying for the National Merit Scholarship Program.

Updates to Standardized Testing - 9/20/2021

SCA will no longer offer the SAT Suite of Assessment to juniors. We will continue to offer the PSAT 9 to freshmen and the PSAT/NMSQT to sophomores and juniors. SCA’s scheduled PSAT testing day is October 13, 2021. In addition to offering the PSAT, SCA will offer the Pre-ACT to juniors and sophomores.  

 SCA upcoming Test Dates 

  • October 13, 2021: PSAT Test Day for 9th, 10th, and 11th graders 
  • October 20, 2021: Pre-ACT for juniors 
  • March 2022: Pre-ACT for Sophomores

Why take the PreACT? Click here to learn more.

Comparing the ACT and the SAT

Things to keep in mind about the SAT and ACT

The  SAT and ACT  generally cover the same topics. Both the ACT and SAT are nationally recognized standardized tests. Most colleges do not prefer one test over the other. Neither the SAT or ACT is harder than the other. Some students do better on one test over the other. This may not be the case for other students.

The best way to decide if taking the SAT, ACT, or both tests is right for you is to take a timed full-length practice test  of each type. SCA will offer juniors the opportunity to take both the PSAT on October 13 and Pre-ACT on October 20. Since the content and style of the SAT and ACT are similar, factors like how students handle time pressure and what types of questions students find most challenging can help juniors determine which test is a better fit.

Here is a brief comparison between the ACT and SAT standardized tests (from The Princeton Review):

Compare the ACT and SAT Test

Test Day Helpful Tips for your STAR

  • It is important for your daughter to get a good night’s sleep and to eat breakfast on test day.
  • Read all the answer choices before marking the answer sheet.
  • Use the test book for scratch work.
  • Work steadily — don’t waste time on hard questions. Come back to them after answering all the easier questions.
  • Check the answer sheet regularly to make sure you’re in the right place.

Students will need to bring the following on test day:

  • At least 2 sharpened number two pencils (mechanical pencils or pens are not permitted)
  • A water bottle
  • A calculator IS allowed for Section 4: Math with Calculator only

Items students should leave at home or in their locker:
If brought, STARS will be required to turn them in before entering the testing room.

  • Cell Phones
  • Smart Watches, fitness bands
  • All electronic device-iPod, iPad, etc.

STARS are given a PSAT practice. Tenth and eleventh-grade Mathematics and English teachers will be reviewing some of the PSAT questions during your daughter’s class within the next few weeks.

The PSAT has two purposes, to prepare students to take the SAT and to qualify juniors for the National Merit and other scholarships. Students can prepare by going to the College Board website (https://www.collegeboard.org/psat-nmsqt/preparation) Practice tests and sample questions are available. CollegeBoard and Khan Academy also have many tips and helpful suggestions for preparing for the PSAT and SAT.

  • Sophomores and Juniors will need to be in the classroom by 7:45 am and testing will end at approximately 11:00 am.
  • Students that can drive will be able to go home after dismissal.
  • Sophomores and juniors that will need to wait for parent pick up will be dismissed to the dining hall.
  • https://collegereadiness.collegeboard.org/psat-nmsqt-psat-10/practice

Inside the PSAT 9

SCA’s School Code is 233789

College Entrance Exams

Your guide to college entrance exams.
https://www.bestcolleges.com/resources/college-entrance-exams/

SAT 

SAT Official Practice for Free (Khan Academy)
https://www.khanacademy.org/sat?

SAT Tests – including practice SAT questions
http://sat.collegeboard.org/home

SAT Test Dates and Centers
https://sat.collegeboard.org/register/

ACT

ACT Tests
http://www.actstudent.org/

ACT Test Dates and Centers
http://www.actstudent.org/regist/centers/

ACT Test Preparation
http://www.actstudent.org/onlineprep/

ACT College Planning Checklist
http://www.actstudent.org/college/checklist/

“An excellent school that brings the girls together more like sisters rather than friends.”

Zina

“The community service, the focus on virtuous living, and the sisterhood really instills compassion and respect for all of humanity.”

SCA Parent

“Even if there were 10 stars, I would still put 11!”

Katherine

“[Teachers] care about the success of each student. They come early to help students and stay after school if necessary. They are a super dedicated faculty.”

SCA Parent

“[SCA] builds upon your faith and strengthen you academically throughout the four years in high school so that you are more than ready when you move on to college.”

Zina

“This high school experience is like none other you can get anywhere. There is joy and comradery and the girls are happy and excel. They are being supported and encouraged by staff. You can watch a girl come in who had a bad experience elsewhere, bloom here and become a different girl in a short time. Can’t say enough good about it. Thank God the founders had this vision and followed through with it. Well needed and we are very thankful!”

SCA Parent

“Another thing I enjoyed about the school was the athletics. I played four different sports at this school and I had the same experience with all of them. The coaches really cared about me, not just how well I was performing and I was treated respectfully on and off the court. Further more, I felt that I was really being pushed physically and mentally during practice which I value in any activity.”

Alumna

“I have been very impressed with the teachers at this school. They both challenge the girls academically and show true concern for them on a personal level as well.”

SCA Parent

“I was among one of the very first classes SCA ever had. As a pioneer and a student to be a part of the foundation of clubs and classes that continue today, I am beyond proud of how far the school has come. There were many ups and downs during my four years but an amazing experience overall. Today at college I still look back on and cherish my times at SCA, thankful for the connections, education and sisterhood I acquired. I am looking forward to seeing many more young women carry on the traditions my class and recent classes have set for the future.”

Alumna, Class of '14

“As a graduate of this school, I can attest to not only the strong education I received from SCA but also the strong foundation I was given in which I could build my own faith upon. I felt fully prepared for the ‘real world’ both academically and spiritually.” 

MaryKatherine

Each summer here at SCA we host a variety of camps designed with future STARS in mind. Camps offered cover athletics, arts, science, and more.

Register today!