The single most important thing you can do if you want a perfect SAT score is… actually register for the SATs!  Once you’ve decided to take the SAT, you should set a schedule for yourself.  This will include how long and what sections you plan to study each day and a testing date.  Fortunately for students who want to get a headstart on prep, The College Board has already all anticipated testing dates until June 2021 on their website.  Register as soon as you know when you’re going to take the exam.  You’ll be able to choose a testing location closer to home. Don’t put yourself in a position where you’re driving 45 minutes to a school you’ve never been to and risk getting lost all because you didn’t register early.


The latest SAT you can take and still use for Early Admissions is the one proctored in October; for Regular Admissions, you can take the test as late as December.  Barring an irregularity, students can expect their results back within two weeks. We recommend that students take the exam two to three times; many colleges allow applicants to “superscore” which means that you submit your highest score from each section between each time you took the test.  Sitting for the exam multiple times gives you the opportunity to recalibrate your study plan and work on your weak areas.


Many top-tier schools such as Harvard and Pomona require students to take at least two SAT II subject tests.  Even ones that don’t mandate the SAT IIs will almost always consider them so you should look at the subject tests as a way to bolster your application.  Most students only take those once; directly before or before they’ve taken the corresponding AP Exam, in May or June respectively. Partially this is due to the fact that the SAT IIs are offered much more sporadically, about six times a year.  Furthermore, not every subject test is offered during each session. Once again, the College Board has plotted out when they plan to offer each subject test years in advance.  It’s often possible to take both the SAT and the SAT II on the same day, but be forewarned: that can quickly balloon into over 6 hours of testing.  Even our strongest students become fatigued and risk performing worse than expected as a result. Determining what’s right for you is an important step to maximizing your score.


The earlier your preparations begin, the better you’ll perform.  That’s a fact of life. At Ivy Admissions, we suggest that our students start taking practice exams and reviewing concepts as early as their Sophomore year.  Taking the PSAT will give you a benchmark score as well as a diagnostic of your strengths and weaknesses which you can build upon. Ivy Admissions’ uniquely holistic preparation program will give you guidance for both your study methods and schedule.  With Ivy Admissions, you’ll start early and finish flawlessly.