3 years ago
Admissions Advice

Should I study for SAT Essay?

I'm signed up for the March SAT with essay, but Collegeboard is suspending the essay in the future, so colleges seemingly will care less about it. Should I still study for it?

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@DebaterMAX3 years ago

Are you studying for it or doing mock ones?

[🎤 AUTHOR]@cubershz3 years ago

I'm doing the mock ones to study for it. I'm signed up for an official exam.

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2 answers

Accepted Answer
3 years ago

The decision to take the essay section is completely up to you. It can't hurt you if you choose not to take it however it can help you depending on where you apply to college and whether the SAT Essay is part of the optional criteria they consider there.

Here are 2 scenarios where the Essay Section can help you.

1.) You are applying to a IVY or Elite college and score a 20 to 24 on the essay section. This shows evidence that you are a very good writer. Keep in mind you have to do some additional research to determine if the schools you are applying to even consider the essay portion. You can look each school's common data set to determine that in Section C. which covers Admissions Stats and Criteria. Keep in mind, the Essay is never required, but some Elite colleges will consider it as an add'l piece of information, if you choose to submit it. (((for example I had a 750 reading/writing and a 21 essay and a 35 ACT with a 11 Essay score so I submitted them)))

2.) You are submitting your SAT score however you don't have a perfect record in your transcript with regards to English coursework. So say you have a B or two in English but you scored 700-800 on the SAT and 20-24 on the SAT Essay, that would show that you have mastery of English and have somewhat improved since earning the B or Bs. It's not a 1 to 1 forgiveness for the Bs, but if that school considers the Essay Section, I might help. After researching literally a 100 CDSs from college, the pattern I noticed is that some of the better Liberal Arts Colleges say schools like Skidmore, Bates, Middlebury, Colgate may consider the Essay Portion more important that some Top Research Universities. I think its because when you go to a LAC you tend to study more humanities which requires more writing and papers versus studying computer science, accounting, engineering, etc.

From College Board's statement 1/19/21:

We will also discontinue the optional SAT Essay after the June 2021 administration.

Students who are currently registered, or plan to register, for an upcoming SAT with Essay will still be able to test through the June 2021 administration. Students who prefer to cancel the optional Essay portion of their SAT can do so in their online account, with no change fees, until the registration deadline.

After June 2021, the Essay will only be available in states where it’s required as part of SAT School Day administrations. Students scheduled to take the SAT on a school day should check with their school about whether the Essay will be included.

Writing remains essential to college readiness and the SAT will continue to measure writing and editing skills, but there are other ways for students to demonstrate their mastery of essay writing, and the SAT will continue to measure writing throughout the test. The tasks on the SAT Reading and Writing and Language sections are among the most effective and predictive parts of the SAT.

3 years ago

For schools that consider the SAT Essay Id focus more on the SAT proper but still brush up on the essay. The sole exception is if you are ultra confident in it or you know you will not do well. Another thing to look into is if you can send this SAT but not the essay to colleges (I honestly don’t know) if you can I’d consider not doing any more prep and to solely focus on the SAT. I don’t believe any schools necessitate taking the essay I’m pretty sure all of them are essay optional.

In case you didn’t know that means if submitted it will be considered (thus benefitting you as you should only submit when it benefits you) but if not submitted it isn’t considered meaning there’s no gain or loss.

I Hope this helps and feel free to comment if you’s like clarification as I’d be more than happy to help!

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Duke University
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Unweighted GPA: 3.7
SAT: 720 math
| 800 verbal


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