As students enter their 11th grade year, there are several different types of tests they will need to take, depending upon their college selections.

Spartanburg Day School strongly recommends that students take at least one SAT (and one ACT) their junior year, and depending on results, perhaps additional exams as a junior or senior.


The ACT test is a “college-readiness” standardized test that serves as an alternative option to the SAT test. Colleges will accept the ACT score in lieu of the SAT score. Spartanburg Day School college counselors recommend that you take at least one SAT test and one ACT test since they vary a bit in content and format.

The ACT includes 5 section grades of English, Math, Science Reasoning, Reading, and an optional essay (requirement varies by college). From each score, an overall Composite Score is determined, based on a scale of 1-36.

Advanced Placement (AP)

AP (Advanced Placement) exams are taken at the end of an AP course in May. These courses are designed to be college-level in rigor. Please speak with a course’s instructor or a college counselor to determine if an AP course may be a good fit for you. High exam scores can be used for course credit or course placement in college, depending on the institution.


The SAT is the longest running and likely the most famed standardized test used in the college admissions process. Beginning in March 2016, students will take a redesigned SAT. For more on details on the changes, please read below