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What to Know Before the September and October SAT Administrations

Safety Requirements; Information on Test Center Closures

New York, N.Y. – Approximately 334,000 students registered for the September 26 SAT® administration and 363,000 for the October 3 SAT and SAT Subject Tests™ administration. As a result of local test centers deciding to close or reduce capacity due to covid-related health and safety measures, 183,000 September-registered students and 154,000 October-registered students are unable to test as of September 21. Of test centers initially scheduled to administer the tests, 61% are currently open for September and 65% are currently open for October, though some have reduced capacity; of open centers, 9% are at capacity for September and 27% are at capacity for October; of centers that announced they are closed, 39% are closed for September and 35% are closed for October.

The first SAT School Day administration of the year is tomorrow, September 23. SAT School Day is an important opportunity for the many students who take the SAT for free as part of state- and large district–sponsored programs, fostering a college-going culture and supporting equity. The September SAT School Day administration was added to the fall calendar for this school year to provide more opportunities for students to test. The College Board has also adapted its policies and procedures for administering in-school assessments to provide more flexibility so schools can adhere to safety and social distancing guidelines.

“We’re grateful to educators across the country who were able to provide opportunities for nearly 150,000 students to test safely during the August test administration. We know this is a challenging time for students who want to take the SAT,” said Priscilla Rodriguez, the College Board vice president of College Readiness Assessments. “We will continue to work together with educators to provide testing opportunities to students throughout the rest of the fall and academic year.”

The College Board requires test centers to follow local public health guidelines as well as College Board health-related policies. At all weekend test centers, students and staff must wear a mask or protective face covering throughout the SAT administration and students must be seated at least six feet apart during testing. Additionally, students must confirm a series of health and safety statements (including that they don’t have symptoms of covid-19 and are not violating any travel or quarantine requirements) before entering the test center or testing room.

Local schools and test centers make individual decisions about whether to administer the SAT. The College Board has asked weekend test centers to report closures as quickly as possible to help ensure students are informed before test day. When weekend test centers notify the College Board they have closed or reduced capacity, College Board directly emails students about the change and posts the reported closures on our Test Center Closings page, which is updated continuously. College Board encourages students to opt in to receive text message updates if they haven’t already, check their email regularly for messages from the College Board, check with their local test center, and check the Test Center Closings page up until the morning of the test. If their test center closes, students will receive a refund and can register for a future test date.

Due to the disruption and uncertainty students are facing, the College Board has asked colleges to extend deadlines for receiving test scores and to equally consider students for admission who are unable to take the test due to covid-19. Colleges understand that testing opportunities are limited this year, and most are not requiring a test score for the upcoming admissions cycle.

For more information, please visit the SAT Coronavirus Updates page.

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About College Board

College Board is a mission-driven not-for-profit organization that connects students to college success and opportunity. Founded in 1900, College Board was created to expand access to higher education. Today, the membership association is made up of over 6,000 of the world's leading educational institutions and is dedicated to promoting excellence and equity in education. Each year, College Board helps more than seven million students prepare for a successful transition to college through programs and services in college readiness and college success—including the SAT® and the Advanced Placement® Program. The organization also serves the education community through research and advocacy on behalf of students, educators, and schools. For further information, visit collegeboard.org.

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