ACT vs SAT (Which is Better?)

ACT and SAT are two kinds of normalized forms of exams taken by institutes to recognize the abilities of students. Each student gets an option to either select one to pass an exam. The similarity between them is that they both contain portions of different subjects and the process of finding skills of a student. But there are also main differences between the quantity and nature of subject portions.

In this article, you will find all the details about the scoring system of the act and sat taken in colleges and universities for a better understanding of a student’s basic skills in learning the common and compulsory subjects. Due to these tests, the institute can select subjects for the student based on his or her skills and ability to learn. One can also get a scholarship depending on their results.

Key Differences Simplified

ACT: The main difference between ACT and SAT is that ACT does not have lengthy math portions. It has almost equal portions of writing, reading, and math. The ACT is overall shorter than SAT and it has simplified the process for students by allowing calculators for math calculations.

ACT can be longer in duration if the student has to write an essay as well. The point that differentiates ACT from SAT the most is that it has a science portion which is not included in SATs.

SAT: The key difference that differentiates SAT from ACT is that it is more time-consuming than ACT and has two portions for math which is one without a calculator and one where the calculator is allowed. SAT focuses more on the math section which includes both types of algebra and data analysis which is not included in the ACT.


SAT: Colleges and universities take SATs of students and their percentile is taken out to grade them according to their results. SAT is ranked highest for institutes when it comes to testing students for problem-solving skills.

ACT: The ACT quiz is ranked higher and is preferred by educational institutes with goals to test the learning abilities and knowledge level of students. ACT is ranked higher for courses that include science as one of the main subjects.

What are the Pros and Cons of Both?

Here are some pros and cons of taking the ACT and SATs which might shed some light on SAT vs Act which is easier

Pros of taking Act

You get to have a simpler version of the math test. Using the calculator is allowed in ACT. You get to have an optional advantage of essay writing. It is less time-consuming than the SAT

Cons of taking ACT

It might be more challenging due to less time. The availability of calculator usage also comes with complex and challenging math problems. It is also an addition to a subject which is science.

Pros of taking the SAT

SAT vs ACT score comparison shows that SAT has a wider range in the scoring system. The possibility of getting passing scores is easier on the SAT. SAT does not have any additional subjects like science. SATs are slow-paced and have enough time to complete without any time management difficulty.

Cons of taking the SAT

The math section in the SAT is divided into two portions which makes it complex. One section of math does not allow the usage of calculators. SATs are lengthy and can be tiring.

Do colleges prefer the ACT or SAT?

There is no reason for colleges to prefer any test over the other because it merely depends on the student’s way of learning and capability. A student can be good at any of the tests and the colleges will make their studying program according to the results of ACT or SAT.

Should I take the SAT or ACT quiz?

If you are having a hard time choosing between both types of quiz tests then keep in mind that the SAT is more focused on testing the skills of students on matters like problem-solving and Overall intelligence while the ACT is more focused on the actual understanding of subjects and it highly tests your learning skills and Knowledge. This will make it easier for you to choose between SAT and ACT.

Is the SAT harder than the ACT?

There is no proof that the SAT is more difficult than the ACT because it depends on the student’s preference. Both tests have slight differentiation in terms of subject portions and the SAT is a little simpler than the ACT but is lengthier than the ACT as well.

If you are concerned about which one is better for you then a practice test might be a good idea for you before going for the actual quiz. This will help you recognize your abilities and find what you are good at.

What is the difference between both scoring systems?

The conversion of scoring can be done in colleges to pass the exams. ACT scoring is lower than SAT. ACTs can be scored up to 36 maximum while the SATs can be scored to 2400 Max.



Jenny Blake
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