Students Face Many Unique Changes and Difficult Challenges With Sat and Act Testing


Caroline Moseley

As the college admissions process kicks off, Upper School students question if the ACT and SAT tests will be administered. As for the SAT, the university systems in some states, like California, will not require test scores. If students want to attend college in California, they will not be required to take the test. According to, all of the test sites are closed due to COVID-19; therefore, students will take the ACT at their own homes. 

However, Upper School students wonder if they will be able to effectively take the test at home. “The atmosphere is so different, so it may be hard to focus during the test,” says Junior girl Ruthie Hay. “However, when people are at a test site, there are people all around you and it’s like ‘oh I’m taking a test right now’ whereas in your house there are distractions all around you, like noises maybe of your parents working in the other room.”  

With all the distractions that a house presents, will the students be able to study and actually take the test? Many students have siblings and parents who are working from home. Because of COVID- 19, siblings and students don’t have many places to go. The SAT and ACT test sites are closed, and many public libraries and other quiet places are not open to seating. With students taking the test, where will parents and siblings go?

How about test preparation? With tutoring businesses not allowing their employees to meet with their students in person, Zoom is an alternative. Zoom is an advanced piece of technology that gives students the same experiences that an in-person tutor might give. Students like Lovett junior Lily Puricelli will be doing tutoring on Zoom. Puricelli is able to annotate her screen and share whatever she needs to work on using the “share screen” feature. Puricelli explains “We just get onto Zoom on our scheduled time. I feel that it is pretty much the same as in-person because of how advanced Zoom is.” However, having someone physically there to help students might be better for them compared to asking for help from tutors over the screen. Zoom is convenient and gives students the pleasure of staying at their house. However, tutors don’t physically get to be there to help students. Not having in-person tutoring could be an issue for many. 

This year the Upper School students going through the college admission process are having to navigate a new and unfamiliar system, but the experience will prepare them for being away at home.