The ACT has been the optional essay test for a long time. But most of the competitive colleges require students to submit their ACT score with the essay, if they are applying with an ACT score. In other words, most of the competitive colleges require the essay test score.
You can skip taking the SATs’ essay, only if your selected list of colleges does not require it. For the rest of the students, the new SATs’ essay is a must. For a freshman, sophomore, or junior in high school, who are still not sure which college to join, they should definitely take the SATs’ essay for backup.
For the SATs without the essay, the test duration is three hours. But, the SATs with the essay, takes another 50 minutes. The price also increases from $46 to $60 for the SATs with the essay. But to answer the question, whether it is optional or not, the answer is yes. But, before you decide to skip it, you should check what benefits it offers you.
What are the benefits of the SATs with the essay?
The new SATs’ essay test is easy to prepare for and so there is absolutely no reason not to take it. Additionally, when you prepare for the SATs’ essay, you will get benefits beyond the SATs’ essay. For instance, your vocabulary improves dramatically.
You will be able to develop analytical skills and learn to write faster. Also, you will be able to organize a coherent composition rapidly. So, you will be able to score higher on your high school essays.
Your composition skills, for the essays required for standardized exams like SATs subject Exams and AP Exams, will improve. It is also a sort of practice for crafting better college admissions’ essays and later on, thesis papers and journals.
Also, you will be able to write better scholarship essays. So, in other words, preparation for the SATs with the essay gives an excellent opportunity to improve your reading, analysis, and writing skills dramatically. And these skills are important for success for both college and your career.
So, the scores provide an insight into your strengths and weaknesses for your preparation for the SATs. So, the benefits of preparing for the SATs’ essay are high enough to avoid skipping the SATs’ essay preparation.
Which colleges require the SATs’ essay Score?
Considering all major colleges in the USA, we found that half of the colleges require the SATs’ essay. For instance, Brown, Dartmouth, Duke, Harvard, Princeton, Stanford, and Yale require the SATs’ essay score but, Cornell, Georgetown, MIT, NYU, UChicago, and UPenn do not require it. Also, most liberal arts colleges do not require the SATs’ with the essay, with the exceptions of Claremont McKenna College, Amherst College, and Pomona College.
The same goes for State schools such as Michigan State University, which neither requires nor recommends the SATs’ essay, but the University of Michigan does. So, just for playing safe, one should not assume that SATs’ essay, is optional. Rather, you should thoroughly check whether your dream schools require it or not.