There are two major college entrance exams, the SAT and the ACT. An eligible score on at least one of these exams is required for entrance into most colleges. Almost all colleges now accept both tests with no preference for one over the other.
Students should start to consider taking the SAT, ACT, or both their junior year. They will take the SAT once for free during school, but otherwise must sign up to take the test on a Saturday at a local testing center (A-J for the ACT, SIUC or CCHS for the SAT). The last opportunity to improve test scores for scholarship consideration at most colleges is the October test date of a student’s senior year, so it is recommended that students who are trying to improve their scores sign up to retake the test BEFORE this date. Students who are eligible for a fee waiver can pick one up in the Guidance Office.