International Tests

SAT

The SAT is a standardized test widely used for college admissions in the United States. The SAT is an essential test to take if you want to go to a top tier university. However, some universities do not require it from international students. The test is scored out of 1600, 800 for the math section, and 800 for the reading and writing section. There is an optional third section which is the essay, which is scored out of 24. most Top tier universities in the US require 1400-1600. It varies from each university and you can google what score is needed for any university on your mind to see what their range is. Also, some universities require the essay, but most don’t and for some, it is recommended. The test costs to take about 96.5$ to 111.5$ in Saudi Arabia depending on whether you are taking it with the essay or not. The test is around 3 hours to 3 hours and 45 minutes.

There are many study resources for this test.

 
  1. Khan Academy

  2. SAT books (I recommend the Black Book)

  3. SAT prep courses

  4. Udemy

  5. Youtube

  6. Prepscholar

  7. Study Groups

IELTS

The International English Language Testing System, or IELTS™, is an international standardized test of English language proficiency for non-native English language speakers. Almost all universities require an English proficiency exam -usually IELTS or TOEFL. There are two different types of exams, General Training and Academic. Which one you take depends on what you want to do. For students who want to go to university abroad academic is the one needed. On the other hand, general training is usually used for jobs. The IELTS is scored out of 9. It consists of four different sections: Reading, Listening, Speaking, and writing. each university and major has different requirements, but usually, it ranges from 6-7.5. over 3000 institutions accept IELTS. It is most accepted in the UK in contrast to the TOEFL which is most accepted in the US. Most universities accept both and some only accept one like MIT which doesn’t accept IELTS. There are 2 different Academic IELTS test, one called Academic, and the other called Academic UKVI. UKVI allows you to go to the UK and establish a student Visa whilst the academic doesn’t. if you have in inquiries about whether a university will accept your IELTS UKVI you have to ask the university itself through email and such. the test contents are the same for both the difference in both tests and are merely the test center. You can either take the test on a computer or paper. It costs around 1155 SAR and takes 2 hours and 45 minutes.

There are many study resources for this test.

  1. Magoosh

  2. Udemy

  3. Youtube

  4. Books

  5. Kaplan

  6. Facebook Study groups

TOEFL

Test of English as a Foreign Language is a standardized test to measure the English language ability of non-native speakers. The TOEFL is accepted in more than 10000 universities around the world. You can take the test on a computer or paper, but the one that is most relied on by universities is IBT which is on the computer. It is scored out of 120 and has four sections: reading, listening, speaking and writing. Each scored out of 30 to add up to a score out 120. The test takes around 4 hours. Almost all universities accept TOEFL. Again if you are not sure whether a certain university accepts IELTS or TOEFL you can search on the university’s website or ask them. the test costs about 800 SAR. The average TOEFL minimum requirement is about 78.

There are many study resources for this test.

  1. Udemy

  2. Magoosh

  3. Youtube

  4. Books

  5. Facebook Study groups

  6. ETS

  7. Prepscholar

ACT

The ACT is a standardized test used for college admissions in the United States. Similar to the SAT, it is a test taken for US universities. It doesn’t make a difference for universities whether you take the ACT or the SAT as both are accepted and can replace each other. However, some people prefer to take the ACT as they may find it easier. The ACT has a total composite score of 36. It has 5 sections, one being optional which is the writing, the other four sections are: English, Math, Reading, and Science. The writing section is scored out of 12 and is given separately. The average act score is 20.8. Go in-depth about the test format Test time without writing is 2hrs and 55minutes. And with writing, it is 3hrs and 35 minutes. There are few places the act is offered in Saudi Arabia in contrast to SAT. It costs around 166.5$ with writing and 150$ without writing. To learn more, click here.

There are many study resources for this test.

  1. Udemy

  2. Magoosh

  3. Youtube

  4. Books

  5. Facebook Study groups

  6. ETS

  7. Prepscholar

SAT Subject

Unlike the SAT reasoning which tests general knowledge and critical reasoning, the SAT Subject measures knowledge in specific areas like biology, etc. there are 20 SAT Subject tests in five general subject areas: English, History, Languages, Mathematics, and science. To see all the tests, click here. All the SAT subject tests are multiple-choice and scored out of 800. Most of the tests have curves unlike the SAT. Two thing to note is that these tests do not replace the SAT or the ACT, and that they are not required by most universities. it can further boost your application to college especially for top tier ones.

There are many study resources for this test.

  1. Barron’s books

  2. Official practice tests from college board

  3. prepscholar

AP exams

Advanced Placement exams are offered by the College Board (the same organization that makes the SAT and SAT subject) and are taken each year in May. The tests are the peak of year-long Advanced Placement courses. Good test scores can help you in the college admissions process and may even earn you college credits. In Saudi Arabia, you can take these courses and tests in international schools following the US curriculum. You can prepare for the exam independently as well. These tests help ensure students have learned and absorbed the information of a certain subject.  After all, they are a standardized way of validating your course record. There are many subjects you can enroll in, which you can see here.

Where can AP get you? It can boost your university application, and earn you college credit or skip introductory college classes depending on the college. Each college has certain policies regarding the test. AP is mostly accepted in the US but some other countries accept it, for example, Imperial College London in the UK allows you to go to year 1 if you have taken five AP tests. Every exam has a multiple-choice section, which is scored by computer, and a free-response or essay section, scored by college professors and AP teachers.

One thing you should keep in mind about AP test scores is that you don’t need to get everything right on the test to get a “perfect” score, which is a five. Most colleges will give credit for students scoring a 4s or 5s on AP tests, and some will even give credit for 3s.