10 South Street   NY, NY 10004


The New York Harbor School

10 South Street, Slip 7

New York, New York 10004

 212 458 0800


Most colleges require you to take one of the most common tests, the SAT or the ACT.

Check with the colleges you plan to apply to for their testing requirements.


Scroll down to learn more about the PSAT, SAT, SAT II, and the ACT.

The Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT) is a standardized test administered by the College Board and cosponsored by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC) in the United States. Approximately 3.5 million students take the PSAT/NMSQT each year.  The scores from the PSAT/NMSQT are used to determine eligibility and qualification for the National Merit Scholarship Program.


Students register for the exam through high schools which are members of the College Board. (New York Harbor School is a member of the College Board.  All 10th grade students are required to take the PSAT during their spring semester).  The test is composed of four sections: two Math Sections, Critical Reading, and Writing Skills, and takes two hours and ten minutes to complete.  Originally, each of the three sections was scored on a scale of 20 to 80 points. This paralleled the SAT, which is graded on a scale of 200 to 800 for each section. The PSAT changed its format and content in Fall 2015 to reflect the new SAT. The Reading and Writing Sections were combined into one section score, and the Math portion now includes a section in which usage of calculators is prohibited. The scores for each section range from 160 to 760, adding up to a maximum score of 1520.




The current SAT, introduced in 2016, has four sections: Evidence-Based Reading, Writing and Language, Math (no calculator), and Math (calculator allowed). Students may register to complete an optional essay. The total time for the scored portion of the SAT is three hours (or three hours and fifty minutes if the optional essay section is taken). Students can achieve up to1600 points, combining test results from two 800-point sections: Mathematics and Critical Reading.


Most of the questions on the SAT, except for the essay and short-answer math responses, are multiple choice; all multiple-choice questions have four answer choices. The questions of each section of the same type are generally ordered by difficulty. However, an important exception exists: Questions that follow the long and short reading passages are organized chronologically, rather than by difficulty. Ten of the questions in one of the math sub-sections are not multiple choice. They instead require the test taker to bubble in a number in a four-column grid.  The questions are weighted equally. For each correct answer, one point is added.  No points are deducted for incorrect answers.



The SAT is offered seven times a year in the United States: in August, October, November, December, March, May, and June. The test is typically offered on the first Saturday of the month for the October, November, December, May, and June administrations.  The SAT costs $45 for register ($57 with the optional essay).  However, fee waivers from the college office are available for eligible students & families.  *Students with verifiable disabilities, including physical and learning disabilities, are eligible to take the test with accommodations.


SAT Subject Tests, also known as SAT II, are 20 multiple-choice standardized tests administered by The College Board on individual subjects. They are usually taken to improve a student's credentials for admission to colleges in the United States.  Many colleges use the SAT Subject Tests for admission, course placement, and to advise students about course selection. Some colleges specify that they require SAT Subject Tests for admission or placement; others allow applicants to choose which tests to take. Students typically choose which tests to take depending upon college entrance requirements for the schools to which they plan to apply. (Check with the admissions office at each school to determine if they require subject tests).


Each test is one-hour long. There are currently 20 different tests, 12 of which are foreign language. Examinees are required to bring an acceptable calculator to take the Mathematics tests (calculators are not permitted on any other test), and a CD player to take the language with listening tests.  Each individual test is scored on a scale of 200 to 800.




The ACT assessment measures high school students' general educational development and their capability to complete college-level work with the multiple choice tests covering four skill areas: English, mathematics, reading, and science. The optional Writing Test measures skill in planning and writing a short essay.  Specifically, ACT states that its scores provide an indicator of "college readiness," and that scores in each of the subtests correspond to skills in entry-level college courses in English, algebra, social science, humanities, and biology.


The four test sections are scored individually on a scale of 1–36, and a Composite score is provided which is the whole number average of the four scores.  On the ACT, each question correctly answered is worth one raw point. There is no penalty for marking incorrect answers on the multiple-choice part of the test. Therefore, a student can answer all questions without suffering a decrease in their score for questions they answer incorrectly.


The ACT is offered four to six times a year, depending on the state, in the United States, in September, October, December, February, April, and June and is always on a Saturday except for those with credible religious obligations (who would take the test the following day, Sunday). Candidates may choose to register for either the ACT assessment ($42.50), or the ACT assessment plus writing ($58.50). Fee waivers for ACT registration are also available from the college office. *Students with verifiable disabilities, including physical and learning disabilities, are eligible to take the test with accommodations.




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10 South Street, Slip 7

NY, NY 10004

 212 458 0800