Pros and Cons of ACT and SAT:  ACT Vs. SAT, Score Conversion, Comparison Chart

4 minute read

Pros and Cons of ACT vs SAT: Both the SAT and the ACT exams are globally recognized standardised exams designed to assess an individual’s aptitude, proficiency, and preparedness for pursuing undergraduate programmes at some of the world’s top universities. In other words, you can submit either of these test scores to your preferred university abroad for admission purposes. 

While the two exams may appear inherently similar, they differ significantly at a more intrinsic level. Both have their own pros and cons and understanding these distinctions will help you determine the exam that better aligns with your preferences and learning style. To delve deeper into the pros and cons of the ACT vs SAT, please read the full article.

Name of the Test  ACT and SAT 
Conducted By ACT- ACT IncSAT- The College Board
Scoring Range  ACT- 1 to 36 SAT- 400 to 1600
Number of Questions  SAT- 154ACT- 215
Sections  SAT- 3ACT- 4

What Are the Major Pros and Cons of ACT Vs. SAT?  

Both the ACT and SAT standardised test systems have their own pros and cons, and it is up to you to choose which test is more suitable for you and aligns with your preferences. To help you make an informed decision, refer to the following table:

Name of the Test Pros Cons 
SAT  1. Accepted by major academic institutions worldwide. SAT scores can be submitted to get specific scholarships.
2. Individuals with a solid foundation in mathematics are more likely to reap benefits from the SAT.
3. The SAT is easy to understand and follow.
1. The growing number of SAT takers each year makes it increasingly competitive to achieve a high score on the exam. 
2. Students with weaker maths skills often struggle to reach their desired SAT score range.
ACT 1. Accepted by major academic institutions worldwide. 
2. Employs more concise and clear questions than the SAT. 
3. Assigns equal weightage to all sections. 
4. Allows students to send their best scores to universities/colleges, enhancing their chances of admission. 
5. Students with stronger writing skills can reap the benefits of the ACT. 
1. Students with weaker maths skills often struggle to reach their desired ACT score range.
2. Requires students to answer more questions within a shorter time span. 
3. The science section of the ACT exam poses a major challenge to students without a strong background in the said subject. 

SAT vs ACT Comparison Chart

Refer to the following chart to get an overview of the key differences between the SAT and the ACT exams. 

Source: College Advisor

SAT vs ACT: Score Conversion

Refer to the table given below to go through the ACT and SAT score conversions. 

ACT Scoring Range  SAT Scoring Range 
9 610-590
10 640-620
11 680-650
12 720-690
13 770-730
14 820-780
15 870-830
16 910-880
17 950-920
18 980-960
19 1020-990
20 1050-1030
21 1090-1060
22 1120-1100
23 1150-1130
24 1190-1160
25 1220-1200
26 1250-1230
27 1290-1260
28 1320-1300
29 1350-1330
30 1380-1360
31 1410-1390
32 1440-1420
33 1480-1450
34 1520-1490
35 1560-1530
36 1600-1570

So, that was all about the pros and cons of ACT and SAT exams. Both the SAT and ACT exams serve as metrics for gauging individuals’ aptitude and preparedness for adapting to the rigorous academic environment and culture of foreign universities. Despite their apparent similarities, these exams have significant distinctions that set them apart. There is no definitive way to infer which one is more suitable for you; however, several factors should be considered when making your choice between the two.

                                                              Related Blogs 
Average ACT Score How to Calculate ACT Results and Scores? Acing Reading Section in ACT: Strategies And Tips
SAT Registration: Important Dates, Eligibility Criteria and Step-Wise Procedure SAT Exam in India 2023: Application Process SAT Preparation Tips & Tricks 2023


Q1. Is the ACT easier than the SAT?

Ans: Both ACT and SAT exams lie on a similar spectrum of difficulty. The answer to this question depends entirely on your preferences. For instance, those with weaker maths skills may find the SAT exam more challenging, while those with weaker English proficiency may find the ACT to be much more challenging than the SAT.

Q2. What do SAT and ACT test applicants on?

Ans: The SAT assesses students in the areas of English and Mathematics. On the other hand, the ACT exam evaluates students’ proficiency in English, Mathematics, Science, and Reading.

Q3. Is SAT easier than ACT for the reading section?

Ans: Yes, the reading section of the SAT is comparatively much easier than the ACT. The SAT exam’s reading section has shorter passages and the questions are also shorter in comparison to the ACT

Visit the Leverage Live page of Leverage edu or contact our study abroad experts at 1800-57-2000 to strengthen your scores and application to secure your spot in your dream college. 

Leave a Reply

Required fields are marked *