How can a student figure out which standardized tests to take, when, and how many times?
I tell my students to try both the SAT and ACT but only retake the test with which he or she is really most comfortable. Some students are fortunate enough to do well on the first try, but that isn't the norm. Depending on the timing and preparation, student performance varies. Also, I've found that high school seniors taking standardized tests in the fall often do very well; they are relaxed and know what to expect. Certainly, a student should take the SAT or ACT no more than three times. Regarding SAT Subject Tests, a student should take the test when the material is freshest in his or her mind, usually in June of that academic year (sometimes in May). Hopefully, the timing of the test won't interfere with AP tests (if in May) or finals (if in June). The student can take up to three at one sitting; he or she should take advantage of that and just report the top scores.