Standardized testing is an important aspect of college admissions for the majority of colleges and universities around the world.
TESTING NEWS AND UPDATES (As of January 26, 2021):
- Students should review all testing requirements for specific colleges and universities directly on official college websites. All dates for testing and registration should be viewed only on the official SAT and ACT websites, not third party websites.
- For updates regarding COVID impacts on testing, head to College Board and ACT for more information.
- For the latest on TEST-OPTIONAL Trends and Policies, head to FairTest.org, but ALWAYS check the specific university or college website for updated information.
- For updates on the phasing out of the SAT Essay and the SAT 2 Subject tests, click here
- Here’s some additional perspectives on the College Board testing changes from a selective college and a higher education think-tank.
All Niwot High juniors, and all juniors throughout the state of Colorado, are required to take the SAT in April of each year. There is no fee for this test. Counselors will register all juniors for this test at school. Juniors who have completed Algebra 2 by the end of 10th grade often take their first SAT or ACT in the winter of junior year. If you have questions about when to take your first SAT or ACT, please consult with your school counselor.
Click here for the SVVSD “SAT Challenge” page that includes helpful information and resources.
While the state administered SAT is accepted by all public colleges and universities in Colorado, it is highly recommended that students take a national SAT with writing, both for admissions requirements for in-state private and for out-of-state public and private colleges and universities. Taking an SAT or ACT a second or third time is also as a chance to improve scores. Some students choose to take both the ACT and the SAT; both are used for college admissions decisions and awarding merit-based scholarships. Most colleges do not prefer one test over the other.
Students register for the National SAT, SAT 2 and all ACT tests on their own. A limited number of registration fee waivers are provided by SAT and ACT. See your counselor for more information.
For more information on the ACT and SAT, please choose from the following resources:
- SAT – Official website
- ACT – Official website
- Tips For Designing Your Testing Timeline
- The SAT Bell Curve Explained
- ACT v SAT?
- Which test is taken more?
- What is the SAT 2 (Subject Tests)?
- How Colleges Use Admissions Tests
- Are there colleges or universities that don’t consider testing as part of admissions?
Testing Accommodations: Some students, such as those with diagnosed and documented disabilities, or those with 504 Plans, Special Education IEP’s, Health Plans, and other individual cases, may apply for testing accommodations for any standardized test given at Niwot High School. Students and families work in conjunction with their Niwot High School Counselor to apply for accommodations. Follow the links for information on ACT Accommodations and PSAT/SAT and AP Accommodations.
The PSAT/NMSQT is typically held at Niwot High School in October. The Practice PSAT9, Practice PSAT10, and the PSAT/NMSQT are available to all 9-11th graders in the spring each year. Click here for more information on the PSAT/NMSQT.
Advanced Placement (AP) Exam Dates
Click here for more information about AP Exam Dates and FAQs.
Test Preparation Resources: The market for online and site-based, local test preparation is large and varied. To help you decide on what type of test preparation you might choose, we recommend that you talk to your school counselor, and especially other students, friends and neighbors regarding their experiences. As a means to narrowing down your choices, take a look at this helpful article.
Online Test Prep Resources (just a sampling) :
- Official ACT Test Prep
- Official SAT Test Prep
- Official SAT Test Prep in conjunction with Kahn Academy
- College in Colorado
- Prep Factory
Local Test Prep Resources, in order of recommendation: