College Counseling Standardized Testing Information

The Adelson School is a Sunday test center for both the ACT and SAT in June and December.

Please refer to the Testing Calendar for all administration dates and registration deadlines. 

The Adelson Educational Campus School code for the SAT and ACT is: 290229.

An Explanation of all the Major College Assessment and Entrance Exams

Explore - Taken in Grade 8 is an abbreviated, grade appropriate version of the ACT. The EXPLORE test is an “entry level” assessment of academic progress and college readiness from the creators and provides a five-year (grades 8 through 12) systematic measure of your child’s academic growth and intellectual development, as they prepare your child for their high school experience.

Plan - Grade 10 from creators of the ACT, The PLAN provides a midpoint review of academic progress measuring college readiness. If your child attended the Adelson Educational Campus in eighth grade, you may want to pull out the EXPLORE results and compare. The PLAN provides excellent practice and preparation for the ACT college admission test, and is the best predictor of success on the ACT.

PSAT/NMSQT – The PSAT/NMSQT is given to all sophomores and juniors during October. As 10th graders its purpose is to ‘simulate’, serve as practice, for SAT taken again as a junior. Eleventh grade results serve as the National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (NMSQT), which is owned and operated by the National Merit Foundation and co-owned by The College Board. Only the junior score is used for National Merit consideration. Colleges do not receive PSAT scores. However, some colleges may purchase the names of selected PSAT takers in order to promote their institutions to students.

SAT Reasoning Exam - This 3 hour and 45 minute exam focuses on critical reading, mathematical reasoning, and writing ability. Each section is worth up to 800 points for a maximum composite score of 2400. The writing section’s 25-minute essay is designed to provide colleges with a better measure of writing reasoning and critical thinking skills. The critical reading name change reflects the elimination of analogies and emphasis on reading skills. Math quantitative comparisons have been eliminated in favor of enhanced college preparatory math (algebra II). We recommend taking the SAT Reasoning exam for the first time in the spring of the junior year and again in October or November of the senior year. It is offered on several dates throughout the year.

SAT Individual Subject Exams – One-hour tests measuring specific knowledge in 21 subject areas. Some selective colleges and universities require SAT Subject Tests for admission in addition to the SAT Reasoning Test. The University of California no longer requires them for admission, however, some majors at some UC campuses may still recommend particular tests; these details will be posted on the admission page of their Web site. An hour in length, you may take up to 3 exams on any designated date. Please note that all tests are not administered on all dates. Subject Exams should be taken as soon as possible after the student completes the studying of a single subject, for instance, physics, but as late as possible for subjects that are cumulative in nature like math. If considering “most selective colleges” it is advisable to double check to determine which tests, if any, are required. If so, it is recommended that you take two or three Subject Exams by May or June* of the junior year. You may take them again in November* or December of the senior year. Your teachers are in the best position to advise you on which tests you are best prepared to take.

ACT (American College Testing Program) – The ACT is another standardized college entrance test given several times a year. The test consists of four, 35 to 50 minute sections and measures achievement in four areas: English usage, mathematics usage, reading comprehension, and science reasoning and is curriculum based. ACT recently added a 30-minute “optional” writing assessment. Students receive a score for each section plus a composite score ranging from one to 36 and a separate writing score. Post Secondary Schools will be making their own decision about whether they will require the writing assessment. We advise you to sit for this optional section. Students are asked to check the requirements of the colleges/universities they are considering before registering. Every college/university colleges across the country accepts the ACT. For a test comparison of the SAT and ACT scores refer to the Concordance Table, under Testing on the ACT Website.

AP - Advanced Placement - These three-hour examinations are based on a full year college level course in high school. If enrolling in an AP course, students are required to sit for the exam in May. Juniors and seniors are eligible to include AP courses in their schedule.

The Nevada Proficiency Exams…the four sections comprising the Nevada Proficiency exams include: writing, reading, science and mathematics. While not graduation requirements, successfully passing of all four sections allows students to compete for the Millennium Scholarship. These exams, administered at Adelson for the first time in March of the junior year are only one of the criteria for Millennium consideration. To qualify for the Millennium you must also: 1) Graduate with a diploma from a Nevada public or private high school; (2) you complete high school with a 3.25 gpa calculated using all high school credit granting courses; (3) you must have been a resident of Nevada as defined by the Board of Regents for at least two years of your high school years.

Where can the Millennium Scholarship be used? The maximum lifetime total the Millennium Scholarship pays is $10,000 for undergraduate coursework. You must be a full-time student and you will receive this support only during the first six years following your high school graduation.

To locate additional information about test fees, dates and registration procedures, refer to these links and see the Calendar of Testing Section on the College Counseling Web page.

For more information regarding the SAT and ACT, please visit:  or