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Difference between SAT and ACT?


I'm confused with how the SAT and the ACT are different? Also, I wanted to make sure that on the ACT it's better to leave questions blank than to guess because blank questions don't take off points while wrong ones do? Or is it the other way around? Thanks!

asked - September 03, 2018 15:34

Elizabeth Keen

  • Added on: 03 Sep 15:34
  • By Elizabeth Keen

1 Response


Honestly there are not a lot of differences between the ACT & SAT, as both are nationally recognized standardized tests which are common admission requirements for many colleges, and typically they will accept either score to fulfill that requirement.

The primary differences of these two tests are how they are structured and scored more than anything. The SAT is also slightly longer than the ACT. When taking the ACT you are looking at around 3 hours and 35 minutes with writing and the SAT is about 3 hours and 50 minutes with an essay. Both the writing and essay portions are optional so you can deduct some time off each tests for these sections if you choose. The ACT order of sections is English, Math, Reading & Science. The SAT order of sections is Reading, Writing & Language, Math (no calculator), and Math (calculator).

To answer your second question on whether to leave questions blank or answer them. . . both tests utilize rights-only scoring, meaning you will not be penalized for incorrect answers, so whether it is wrong or blank it will still not be counted towards your final score, as only questions you get correct are counted.

answered - September 05, 2018 18:51

Billy Sturgill

Okay, thank you! That helped a lot! - Elizabeth Keen September 05, 2018 20:38