The ACT-SAT* Score Conversion & Information Supersite

Enter your SAT composite score to get your ACT equivalent.

SAT EBRW + M Score:
▲ Enter the sum of your SAT Evidence-Based Reading and Writing score and SAT Math score.
ACT Equivalent:
▲ ACT Composite Score

Enter your ACT Composite Score and get your SAT equivalent.

ACT Composite Score:
▲ Enter your ACT Composite score.
SAT Equivalent:
▲ SAT Evidence-Based Reading and Writing + Math Score

The Tests to Take to Get into American Colleges

Welcome college counselors, admissions officers, parents, and students in the Class of 2019, Class of 2020, Class of 2021, and Class of 2022 to ConvertYourScore.org!

You've arrived at the world's authoritative SAT-ACT conversion tool and information resource because you realize that most colleges and universities in the United States require or recommend that students submit scores from one of two standardized tests - the SAT and the ACT - in order to be considered for admission. Standardized tests like the SAT and ACT are important to American colleges and universities because they are standardized - unlike high school grades and extracurricular activities, which will vary greatly from school to school and student to student. While there is much debate these days as to whether or not success on the SAT or ACT is a reliable predictor of how a student will perform during his or her freshman year of college, students can't get wrapped up in the latest academic debates on the matter. For the foreseeable future most colleges will continue to judge applicants and their perceived potential based on their scores on the SAT or ACT. If you want to have the most college options, you need to take the SAT and/or ACT.

The good news is that all American colleges and universities that require submission of standardized test scores as a part of a student's application will consider a student's score on the SAT or ACT. Colleges look at your success on these tests as interchangeable - even though the tests assess your skills and knowledge quite differently. Thus, you need to be strategic about which tests to take and when to take them in order to ultimately submit to colleges your best scores.

Many students, depending on their particular strengths and weaknesses, will perform much better on one test or the other. Consequently, prepared students will study for both tests by purchasing and completing timed practice tests included in 2018 editions of The Official SAT Study Guide and The Official ACT Prep Guide. Next, students should sign up for and take the SAT and ACT at least once each in order to gauge which test casts them in the best light.

How do the ACT and SAT Differ?

The SAT assesses students in the areas of Evidence-Based Reading & Writing (EBRW) and Math (M). There is also an optional essay in its own section. The ACT tests students in English (E), Math (M), Reading (R), and Science (S). On the ACT there is also an optional essay.

The ACT's sections are broken down as follows:

    • English: 75 questions/45 minutes
    • Mathematics: 60 questions/60 minutes
    • Reading: 40 questions/35 minutes
    • Science: 40 questions/35 minutes
    • Optional Writing: 1 essay prompt/40 minutes

    The required sections of the ACT take 2 hours and 55 minutes. If you opt to take the optional Writing (essay) section, you will add an extra 40 minutes to the end of your test. The key concepts tested on each section of the ACT are as follows:

    • English: Usage/Mechanics and Rhetorical Skills
    • Mathematics: Pre-Algebra and Elementary Algebra, Intermediate Algebra and Coordinate Geometry, and Plane Geometry and Triginometry
    • Reading: Arts and Literature and Social Studies and Sciences
    • Science: Data Representations, Research Summaries, and Conflicting Viewpoints
    • Optional Writing: Ideas and Analysis, Development and Support, Organization, and Language Use and Conventions

    The SAT's five sections proceed as follows:

    • Reading Test: 52 questions/65 minutes
    • Writing and Language Test: 44 questions/35 minutes
    • Math Test - No Calculator (Multiple Choice + Student Produced Response): 20 questions/25 minutes
    • Math Test - Calculator Permitted (Multiple Choice + Student Produced Response): 38 questions/55 minutes
    • Optional Essay: 1 prompt/50 minutes

    The required sections of the SAT take 3 hours to complete. If you opt to take the optional Essay section, you will add an extra 50 minutes to your test-day experience.The key concepts tested on each section of the SAT are:

    • Reading Test: Command of Evidence, Words in Context, and Analysis of Social Studies/Science
    • Writing and Language Test: Same as Reading Test + Expression of Ideas and Standard English Conventions
    • Math Test - No Calculator (Multiple Choice + Student Produced Response): Linear Equations and Systems, Quantitative Skills, and some Geometry and Trigonometry
    • Math Test - Calculator Permitted (Multiple Choice + Student Produced Response): Same as first Math Test + Manipulation of Complex Equations
    • Optional Essay: Must prove that you are focused, organized, and precise in your reading, analysis, and writing

How the ACT and SAT are Scored Today

On both the SAT and ACT there is a difference between raw points earned versus scaled points earned. Basically, raw points are earned for correct answers. On both tests no raw points are deducted for multiple choice questions answered incorrectly or left blank.

Yet, the testing agencies responsible for the SAT and ACT hardly make things simple because they don't report to you your raw score (at least not directly in top-level summaries available on score reports). Instead they put your raw scores in the oven - they cook them! Instead of calling your final scores on these tests your cooked scores, they call them your scaled scores. Receiving cooked scores probably would rub people the wrong way. Go figure. Yet, how the SAT and ACT cook their scores is completely different. The SAT inflates and the ACT deflates.

The lowest score one can earn on each of the three sections of the SAT is 200. To earn a 200 on one section of the SAT would mean that you answered no questions right and a lot of questions wrong. Thus, 200 is a very rare score to get on any section of the SAT. A 200 still sounds better than 0 to the man on the street, so congrats if you get a 200. Thus, the lowest potential combined score one can get on the two main sections of the SAT is a 400.

Alternatively, if you get every SAT question right (or nearly every question on some test administration dates), you can earn as high as 800 points on each section. Thus, the highest combined score one can earn on the SAT is 1600. Now that's hot stuff!

The average scores for Americans taking the test come in at just above or below 500 per section depending on the year or exact test date of administration.

Meanwhile, the ACT has a scaled score that looks completely different, first because there are more sections, and second because when you go out to lunch with someone you don't just want to rattle off the sum of your section scores like you would with the SAT. Remember, if somebody earned a 630 Evidence-Based Reading & Writing and 700 Math on the SAT, they would most likely be overheard saying something like, "So, guess what? I just found out that I got a 1330 on the SAT! Can you believe how awesome I am?" When referring colloquially to your greatness as it relates to your ACT score, you speak a bit differently. You share your average score of all the sections that make up the test. This score is referred to as your composite score. The highest composite score one can earn on the ACT is a 36, while the lowest composite score one can theoretically get on the ACT is a 1. So, again, assuming you are out with a friend after checking your scores online, you would say something like, "Oh my gosh! I just logged in and I got a 30!" For the student in this example to get a 30 means that he or she got section scores that averaged out to 30. So, for instance, he or she may have gotten a 29 on the English section a 33 on the Math section, a 28 on the Reading section, and a 31 on the Science section.

29+33+28+31 = 121 / 4 = 30.25

Please note from the example above that ACT will only round up to the next highest round number starting at X.50; therefore, a score of 30.25 is reported as a 30.

What About My Essay/Writing Score?

Note that in the above example we have not mentioned the student's ACT Writing score, which on the ACT is synonymous with a test taker's essay score. This is because a student's Writing (essay) score does not affect his or her composite score in any way. Similarly, on the SAT, a student’s Essay score does not affect his or her composite SAT score in any way. Yet, just because your essays don’t get factored into your composite scores does not mean that they are unimportant.

In 2018 colleges are able to compare better than ever before one’s essay-writing score on the ACT to one’s essay-writing score on the SAT. Those students applying for Fall 2019 college and university admission (and later) in the United States are in one of two groups: those who only are concerned with how they do on the required parts of the SAT (EBRW + M) and ACT (E + M + R + S) and those who are concerned with everything we have dissected up to this point AND their optional essay scores. This is because only fewer than 24 U.S. colleges and universities (as of July 2018) require or recommend students to take the optional Writing section of the ACT and Essay section of the SAT, but if a college requires or recommends that you submit such scores, you can bet they want them for a reason.

Why do colleges care how you can write on a standardized test? The answer is that increasingly colleges need to assess your writing skills on either the SAT or ACT in order to compare how you performed on these tests to the quality of your college application essay(s). The reason colleges want to compare how you write on a test and on the application is because they want to ensure that you in fact are the author of your application essay(s).

The ACT has two readers review your essays, and each reader gives your essay a score between 1 and 6 for four distinct domains: Ideas and Analysis, Development and Support, Organization, and Language Use and Conventions. Thus, your Writing (essay) score on the ACT is the average of these scores. The full ACT essay-scoring rubric is available here.

While the SAT, just like the ACT, has two readers review your essay, these two readers assign your essay three distinct scores - for Reading, Analysis, and Writing - ranging from 1 to 4. The two scores given to each of these three dimensions are then added. Thus, you will receive three scores for your essay that individually will range from 2 to 8 and cumulatively range from 6 to 24. The entire SAT scoring rubric is available here.

As of Summer 2018, the following colleges and universities require applicants to take the optional SAT Essay section: Claremont McKenna College, Soka University of America, United States Coast Guard Academy, United States Military Academy, University of California Berkeley, University of California Davis, University of California Irvine, University of California Los Angeles, University of California Merced, University of California Riverside, University of California San Diego, University of California Santa Barbara, University of California Santa Cruz, University of Delaware, and University of San Diego.

As of Summer 2018, the following colleges and universities consider SAT Essay section scores if submitted: Abilene Christian University, Amherst College, Austin College, Binghamton University (SUNY), Brown University, Chapman University, Colby College, College of Charleston, Concordia College Moorhead, Dartmouth College, Duke University, Georgia Institute of Technology, Harvard University, Michigan State University, Morehouse College, Occidental College, Oregon State University, Pomona College, Rutgers, New Brunswick & Newark, Simmons College, Stony Brook University (SUNY), Taylor University, University of Miami, University of Minnesota Twin Cities, University of Texas Dallas, and Yale University.

As of Summer 2018, the following colleges and universities require applicants to take the optional ACT Writing section: Berry College, Claremont McKenna College, Soka University of America, United States Coast Guard Academy, United States Military Academy, University of California Berkeley, University of California Davis, University of California Irvine, University of California Los Angeles, University of California Merced, University of California Riverside, University of California San Diego, University of California Santa Barbara, University of California Santa Cruz, University of Delaware, University of San Diego, Wellesley College.

As of Summer 2018, the following colleges and universities consider ACT Writing section scores if submitted: Abilene Christian University, Amherst College, Austin College, Binghamton University (SUNY), Brown University, Chapman University, Colby College, College of Charleston, Concordia College Moorhead, Dartmouth College, Duke University, Harvard University, Michigan State University, Morehouse College, Occidental College, Oregon State University, Pomona College, Rutgers New Brunswick & Newark, Simmons College, Stony Brook University (SUNY), Taylor University, University of Minnesota Twin Cities, University of Texas Dallas, University of Miami, and Yale University.

Why this Site is Valuable

While competitive colleges will review how you did on your ACT or SAT essay, the scores that matter to most to ALL colleges when comparing how you did on one test versus how you did on the other test are the scores that this site asks you to report and convert above.

First, colleges are comparing your SAT composite (EBRW + M) score to your ACT composite (E + M + R + S) score. Then, colleges will also compare your SAT Essay score to your ACT Writing (essay) score.

Comparing your SAT and ACT scores is incredibly frustrating if you don't do it the right way. The above conversion calculators are valuable because they help you see things from the perspective of college admissions officers as they review test scores from students. Your job as a student is to put your best foot forward on your college application. This site helps you do just that by allowing you to gauge which test is your best test.

FriendandConfidant.com

But Wait. There May be More …

The vast majority of students applying to colleges that require or recommend standardized tests to be submitted for admissions consideration need not worry about anything other than what you read above. Yet, for a small and elite group of top students, additional test scores are necessary to report (in addition to exemplary grades, impressive extracurricular activities, a well-written application, and in some cases, a strong interview) in order to get into America's very best colleges. A handful of colleges - the likes of Harvard, Stanford, and Georgetown, among others - require or recommend that students submit their SAT and/or ACT results AND submit scores from one or more tests known as SAT Subject Tests.

Similar to the sections of the SAT, these tests have scaled scores ranging from 200 to 800, but unlike the SAT, these tests are purely content-based, take only one hour each, and cover exotic subjects like Physics, German, and World History. You can take up to three SAT Subject Tests in one day. To be a competitive candidate for admission to most Ivy League and Ivy League-level colleges, plan on taking two or three SAT Subject Tests at the end of the academic year in which you have taken a rigorous course in one of the following content areas:

Never take a real SAT Subject Test before first taking a practice SAT Subject Test at home. This advice is important because you don't want to bomb an SAT Subject Test since it is hard to take it multiple times with the expectation of doing much better from one test to the next. You either know the content or you don't. Just because you do well in, say, your high school Spanish V class does not mean you will do well on the SAT Subject Test in Spanish because the latter could be testing grammar and other content that don't figure into your success in the classroom. The best SAT Subject Test preparation books are The Official Study Guide for ALL SAT Subject Tests, 2nd Edition if you are practicing a sampling of SAT Subject Test options, The Official SAT Subject Tests in Mathematics Levels 1 & 2 Study Guide if you are practicing for either the Math Level 1 or Math Level 2 SAT Subject Tests, and The Official SAT Subject Tests in U.S. & World History Study Guide if you are practicing for the U.S. History or World History SAT Subject Tests.

Most colleges that require, recommend, or favorably consider submission of SAT Subject Test scores as part of a student's application are looking for scores of 700 or higher on such tests in order to be a competitive candidate for admission. Good luck with that!

The eighty-four American/Canadian colleges and universities that, as of Spring 2018, require, recommend, or favorably consider submission of strong SAT Subject Test scores with a student’s application are Amherst College, Babson College, Barnard College, Bates College, Boston College, Boston University, Bowdoin College, Brown University, Bucknell University, California Institute of Technology, Carleton College, Carnegie Mellon University, Case Western Reserve University, Claremont McKenna, Colby College, College of William & Mary, Colorado College, Columbia University, Connecticut College, Cornell University, Dartmouth College, Davidson College, Duke University, Emory University, Franklin Olin College of Engineering, George Washington University, Georgetown University, Hamilton College, Harvard University, Harvey Mudd College, Ithaca College, Johns Hopkins University, Kenyon College, Lafayette College, Macalester College, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, McGill University, Middlebury College, New York University, Northwestern University, Oberlin College, Occidental College, Pomona College, Pratt Institute, Princeton University, Reed College, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Rice University, Scripps College, Smith College, Stanford University, Stevens Institute of Technology, Swarthmore College, The Cooper Union, Union College, University of California Berkeley, University of California Davis, University of California Irvine, University of California Los Angeles, University of California Merced, University of California Riverside, University of California San Diego, University of California Santa Barbara, University of California Santa Cruz, University of Chicago, University of Delaware, University of Georgia, University of Miami, University of Michigan, University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, University of Notre Dame, University of Pennsylvania, University of Rochester, University of Southern California, University of Virginia, Vanderbilt University, Vassar College, Wake Forest University, Washington University in St. Louis, Webb Institute, Wellesley College, Wesleyan University, Worcester Polytechnic Institute, and Yale University.

Not Ever Going to Be a Fan of Standardized Tests?

Fairtest.org has a full list of colleges that don't require the SAT or ACT. While the number of colleges is still relatively small, it is growing as more colleges realize that a student is far more than a score. Narrowing one's college search to only test-optional colleges will greatly limit one's choices; however, it will save one the time it takes to engage in SAT-ACT score comparison.

As of Spring 2018, four-year colleges and universities in the United States that are test optional in the admissions process, test flexible (meaning that the SAT/ACT is not required if other college-level exams specified by college or university, such as SAT Subject Test scores, Advanced Placement Test scores, or International Baccalaureate Exam scores are submitted) in the admissions process, or test optional for those students who rank in the top ten or top eight percent of their high school classes include Agnes Scott College (GA), Alaska Pacific University (AK), Allegheny College (PA), American University (DC), Amridge University (AL), Arizona State University (AZ), Arkansas Tech (AR), Assumption College (MA), Augustana College (IL), Austin College (TX), Baldwin-Wallace College (OH), Bard College (NY), Bard College at Simon’s Rock (MA), Bates College (ME), Bay Path University (MA), Belmont Abbey College (NC), Beloit College (WI), Bennett College (NC), Bennington College (VT), Birmingham-Southern College (AL), Bowdoin College (ME), Brandeis University (MA), Brenau University (GA), Brevard College (NC), Bridgewater State University (MA), Bryant University (RI), Bryn Mawr College (PA), Cabrini University (PA), California State Poly Pomona (CA), California State U. Maritime (CA), California State U. Bakersfield (CA), California State U. Channel Islands (CA), California State U. Chico (CA), California State U. Long Beach (CA), California State U. Los Angeles (CA), California State U. Monterey Bay (CA), California State U. Sacramento (CA), California State U. San Bernadino (CA), California State U. San Marcos (CA), California State U. Stanislaus (CA), California State Univ. Northridge (CA), California State University Fresno (CA), California State University Fullerton (CA), Carthage College (WI), Catawba College (NC), Cazenovia College (NY), Chatham University (PA), Christopher Newport University (VA), Clark University (MA), Colby College (ME) “Test Flexible,” Colby-Sawyer College (NH), College of Idaho (ID), College of Saint Rose (NY), College of St. Elizabeth (NJ), College of the Atlantic (ME), College of the Holy Cross (MA), Colorado College (CO) “Test Flexible,” Columbia College (SC), Concordia College (NY), Connecticut College (CT), Cornell College (IA), Daemen College (NY), Dakota State University (SD), Dean College (MA), Denison University (OH), DePaul University (IL), DeSales University (PA), Dickinson College (PA), Dickinson State University (ND), Doane Univerity (NB), Drake University (IA), Drew University (NJ), Drexel University (PA) “Test Flexible,” Dunwoody College of Technology (MN), Duquesne University (PA), Earlham College (IN), East Texas Baptist University (TX), Eastern Connecticut State University (CT), Eastern Washington University (WA), Elizabethtown College (PA), Elmira College (NY), Embry-Riddle Aeronautical Univ. (FL), Emerson College (MA) , Emporia State University (KS), Endicott College (MA), Everglades University (FL), Fairfield University (CT), Florida Memorial University (FL), Franklin and Marshall College (PA), Furman University (SC), George Mason University (VA), George Washington University (DC), Georgia Gwinnett College (GA), Gettysburg College (PA), Goucher College (MD), Guilford College (NC), Gustavus Adolphus (MN), Hamilton College (NY) “Test Flexible,” Hampshire College (MA), Hampton University (VA), Hanover College (IN), Hartwick College (NY), Hawaii Pacific University (HI), High Point University (NC), Hiram College (OH), Hobart and William Smith Colleges (NY), Hofstra University (NY), Hood College (MD), Houghton College (NY), Humboldt State University (CA), Illinois College (IL), Immaculata University (PA), Ithaca College (NY), Jacksonville University (FL), James Madison University (VA), Johnson & Wales University (RI), Juniata College (PA), Kalamazoo College (MI), Kansas State University (KS), Keiser University (FL), Keuka College (NY), Keystone College (PA), King University (TN), King’s College (PA), Knox College (IL), La Salle University (PA), La Sierra University (CA), Lake Forest College (IL), Lasell College (MA), Lawrence University (WI), Le Moyne College (NY), Lebanon Valley College (PA), Lees-McRae College (NC), Lewis and Clark (OR), Lewis-Clark State University (ID), Loyola University of Maryland (MD), Lycoming College (PA), Lynn University (FL), Manchester University (IN), Manhattanville College (NY), Marist College (NY), Marlboro College (VT), Marymount California University (CA), Marymount University (VA), Maryville University of St. Louis (MO), McDaniel College (MD), McKendree University (IL), Mercyhurst University (PA), Merrimack College (MA), MidAmerica Nazarene University (KS), Middlebury College (VT) “Test Flexible,” Midland University (NE), Midwestern State University (TX), Millersville Univ. of Pennsylvania (PA), Mills College (CA), Mississippi State University (MS), Mississippi University for Women (MS), Montclair State University (NJ), Mount Holyoke College (MA), Mount Ida College (MA), Muhlenberg College (PA), Nazareth College (NY), New School (NY), New York University (NY) “Test Flexible,” Newbury College (MA), Niagara University (NY), Northern State University (SD), Northwest Missouri State University (MO), Northwest Nazarene University (ID), Norwich University (VT), Notre Dame of Maryland University (MD), Ohio Wesleyan University (OH), Oklahoma Wesleyan University (OK), Olivet College (MI), Oregon Institute of Technology (OR), Ottawa University (KS), Paul Smith’s College (NY), Pennsylvania College of Technology (PA), Pensacola State College (FL), Pfeiffer University (NC), Pitzer College (CA), Plymouth State University (NH), Point Park University (PA), Point University (GA), Presbyterian College (SC), Providence College (RI) , Quinnipiac University (CT), Radford University (VA), Ripon College (WI), Roanoke College (VA), Robert Morris University (IL), Roger Williams University (RI), Rollins College (FL), Rowan University (NJ), Sacred Heart University (CT), Saint Joseph’s University (PA), Saint Peter’s University (NJ), Salem State University (MA), Salisbury University (MD), Salve Regina University (RI), San Jose State University (CA), Sarah Lawrence College (NY), Seton Hill University (PA), Sewanee -- University of the South (TN), Siena College (NY), Sierra Heights University (MI), Skidmore College (NY), Smith College (MA), Sonoma State University (CA), South Dakota State University (SD), South Florida State College (FL), Southern New Hampshire University (NH), Southwestern Christian University (OK), St. Anselm College (NH), St. John’s College (MD), St. John’s College (NM), St. John’s University (NY),St. Joseph’s College (ME), St. Lawrence University (NY), St. Leo University (FL), St. Michael’s College (VT), St. Thomas University (FL), Stephen F. Austin State U. (TX) “Top 10%,” Stetson University (FL), Stonehill College (MA), SUNY College of Technology – Delhi (NY), SUNY Potsdam (NY), Susquehanna University (PA), Temple University (PA), Texas A & M (TX) “Top 10%,” Texas A & M Int’l.Univ. (TX) “Top 10%,” Texas Tech University (TX) ‘Top 10%,” The Catholic University of America (DC), The Sage Colleges (NY), Tiffin University (OH), Transylvania University (KY), Trinity College (CT), Union College (NY), Unity College (ME), University of Texas Austin (TX) “Top 8%, University of Texas Dallas (TX) “Top 10%,” University of Alaska Anchorage (AK), University of Alaska Fairbanks (AK), University of Arizona (AZ), University of Delaware (DE), University of Evansville (IN), University of Hartford (CT), University of Hawaii – Oahu (HI), University of Holy Cross (LA), University of Houston (TX) “Top 10%,” University of Maine Farmington (ME), University of Maine Fort Kent (ME), University of Maine Presque Isle (ME), University of Mary Washington (VA), University of Massachusetts – Boston (MA), University of Massachusetts – Lowell (MA), University of Mississippi (MS), University of Nevada – Reno (NV), University of North Texas (TX) “Top 10%,” University of Northern Vt. – Lyndon (VT), University of Puget Sound (WA), University of Rochester (NY), “Test Flexible” University of Saint Joseph (CT), University of Scranton (PA), University of South Dakota (SD), University of Texas Permian Basin (TX), University of Texas Tyler (TX), University of the Ozarks (AR), University of Valley Forge (PA), Ursinus College (PA), Utica College (NY), Vermont Technical College (VT), Virginia Commonwealth University (VA), Wagner College (NY), Wake Forest University (NC), Walla Walla University (WA), Walsh University (OH), Warner University (FL), Warren Wilson College (NC), Washington & Jefferson College (PA), Washington College (MD), Washington State University (WA) “Top 10%,” Wayne State College (NE), Weber State University (UT), Welch College (TN), Wells College (NY), Wesleyan University (CT), West Texas A & M University (TX), Western Connecticut State University (CT), Western New England University (MA), Western Oregon University (OR), Wheaton College (MA), Wheelock College (MA), Whitman College (WA), Whittier College (CA), Whitworth University (WA), Willamette University (OR), William Jewell College (MO), Wilson College (PA), Wittenberg University (OH), Wofford College (SC), Woodbury University (CA), Worcester Polytechnic Institute (MA), and Worcester State University (MA)

Always check directly with the colleges on your list before applying to make sure you understand their most up to date admissions policies fully.