main content starts here

College Testing Information

10th Grade


PLAN helps tenth graders build a solid foundation for future academic and career success and provides information needed to address school districts’ high-priority issues. It is a comprehensive guidance resource that helps students measure their current academic development, explore career/training options, and make plans for the remaining years of high school and post-graduation years.

PLAN can help all students — those who are college-bound as well as those who are likely to enter the workforce directly after high school.

As a “pre-ACT” test, PLAN is a powerful predictor of success on the ACT Assessment. At the same time, many schools recognize the importance of PLAN testing for all students, as it focuses attention on both career preparation and improving academic achievement. For more information visit the ACT website.

11th Grade

ASVAB (Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery)

The ASVAB was developed by the U.S. Department of Defense. The ASVAB Career Exploration Program was developed with input from a panel of career development experts and designed to encourage students to increase their level of self-knowledge and to understand how that information could be linked to civilian and military occupational characteristics.

The ASVAB Program recently was re-designed to be helpful to virtually all students, whether they are planning on immediate employment after high school in civilian or military occupations, or further education at a university, community college, or vocational institution. For more information visit the ASVAB Career Exploration website.

PSAT/NMSQT (Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test)

The PSAT/NMSQT is a program co-sponsored by the College Board and National Merit Scholarship Corporation. For many students, the PSAT/NMSQT is the first official step on the road to college. It assesses skills developed through years of study in a wide range of courses as well as through experiences outside the classroom.

The PSAT/NMSQT has three parts: critical reading, math, and writing skills.

Students take the PSAT/NMSQT to:

  • Help assess skills necessary for college-level work
  • Prepare for the SAT
  • Enter competitions for national scholarships
  • Receive information from colleges

For more information on the PSAT/NMSQT exam, visit the College Board website.

11th & 12th Grade

SAT Reasoning Test

The SAT Reasoning Test (formerly SAT I: Reasoning Test), better known as the SAT, is a three-hour test that measures verbal and mathematical reasoning skills students have developed over time and skills they need to be successful academically. It is standardized across all students, schools, and states, providing a common and objective scale for comparison. High school grades are a very useful indicator of how students perform in college, yet there is great variation in grading standards and course rigor within and across high schools. The SAT consists of seven sections, each timed separately. The first five 30-minute sections can appear in any order, as can the two 15-minute sections.

Each section of the SAT is scored on a scale of 200-800. The SAT is typically taken by high school juniors and seniors.

*Beginning January 2005, the “New” SAT will also include an essay portion.

SAT Subject Tests

Subject Tests (formerly SAT II: Subject Tests) are designed to measure students’ knowledge and skills in particular subject areas, as well as their ability to apply that knowledge. Students take the Subject Tests to demonstrate to colleges their mastery of specific subjects like English, history, mathematics, science, and language. The tests are independent of any particular textbook or method of instruction. The tests’ content evolves to reflect current trends in high school curricula, but the types of questions change little from year to year. Many colleges use the Subject Tests for admission, for course placement and to advise students about course selection. Some colleges specify the Subject Tests they require for admission or placement; others allow applicants to choose which tests to take. Subject Tests fall into five general subject areas: English, History and Social Studies, Math Level 1/Math Level 2, Science and Languages.

For more information on SAT Reasoning and SAT Subject tests visit the College Board website


The ACT Assessment is designed to assess high school students’ general educational development and their ability to complete college-level work. The tests cover four skill areas: English, mathematics, reading, and science reasoning. For more information visit the ACT website.