Why You Should Opt to Take SAT Subject Tests

By Huntington Learning Center

Stand out from the College Admission Crowd by taking the SAT Subject Tests

If you're preparing for college admission you may be wondering if you should take any of the available SAT Subject Tests. These tests are designed for you to showcase your achievement and ability in specific subject areas while enhancing your college application portfolio. When you are applying to colleges you want your portfolio to speak for itself and paint a picture of your strengths, assets, and abilities. These tests help you do just that.

Basics of the SAT Subject Tests:

  • Each Subject Test is an hour in length and is based on content previously covered in high school courses.
  • There are 20 different Subject Tests representing five academic areas: history, English, foreign languages, science, and mathematics. 
  • The Subject Tests are administered six times per year in October, November, December, January, May, and June. Not all exams are offered on all testing dates. It's best to plan ahead to ensure that you are able to take the exams of your choosing.
  • You can sit for three Subject Tests on a single day. You are not allowed to take a Subject Test the same day you take the SAT exam.
  • The Language with Listening exams are only given in the first testing hour of each testing day. You can only complete one listening test per exam date. 
  • The professional tutors at Huntington Learning Center are available to help you prepare for the Subject Tests. We will determine your initial level of mastery and then work to ensure you are progressing through all of the content necessary for success on the exam. 

It is vital to understand how sitting for the Subject Tests can impact your college applications. Taking these exams allows you to:

  1. Stand out from the crowd 
    The Subject Tests provide you the opportunity to differentiate yourself from other candidates. Even colleges and universities that don't require the Subject Tests will likely use the results to make admission decisions. Set yourself apart from the competition by showcasing your knowledge and ability. For example, if you are applying to Northwestern University and want to major in Chemical Engineering demonstrating mastery on the Math Level 2 exam and the Chemistry exam will provide evidence of your achievement and potential.
  2. Showcase your unique abilities 
    If you are an ESL or international student the Subject Tests allow you to shine on exams that don't heavily rely on English language mastery such as science, math, and foreign languages. You can also utilize the Subject Tests to demonstrate your multilingual skills or complete foreign language competency requirements. Huntington Learning Centers offers personalized tutoring programs for a wide range of Subject Tests. We will create a customized tutoring plan that uniquely matches your strengths and areas of need. Since no two students are alike no two tutoring programs are alike either.
  3. Provide evidence for your homeschool education 
    Because homeschool curricula are incredibly varied and often designed to meet individual needs, the Subject Tests are an excellent opportunity to add insight to your education. Colleges will get a better picture of your education,  achievement, and ability while you discover your mastery levels compared to standardized expectations.
  4. Get a jump start on college courses 
    The Subject Tests are often used to place students in college courses. By taking these tests you may have the opportunity to test out of introductory courses, earn college credit, and satisfy basic program requirements. The University of Texas is one college that uses the Subject Tests to determine college credit. Once a student is accepted at the University of Texas the Subject Test scores are evaluated based on program requirements to help determine placement and possible credit.
  5. Paint a complete picture of yourself 
    Your high school transcript only tells the story of courses completed in school. But what about everything you learned in other settings? Enrichment programs, distance learning courses, and self-study will likely not appear on your transcript but have an amazing impact on your knowledge and ability. Use the Subject Tests to display additional competency not attained in school. 
  6. Meet program requirements 
    Some university programs require applicants complete one or more Subject Tests as part of their portfolios. As you are compiling your list of possible colleges pay attention to the requirements. Plan ahead to take these exams so they can be included in your application.


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