On a day in which students found out their June SAT or SAT Subject Test scores, know that while these tests are extremely important in highly selective college admissions, they aren’t everything. Can a student with 1,200 SATs (on all three sections of the exam) gain admission to Harvard? No. It’s not going to happen. But just because you get a perfect score on your SAT, that’s not a good indication either that you’ll gain admission to Harvard. Indeed students with perfect grades and perfect SAT or ACT scores are denied admission each and every year to highly selective colleges such as Harvard. And why? Because students who just so happen to have perfect grades and test scores may not be all that interesting. Maybe a teacher’s letter of recommendation paints a student as a grade grubber (admissions officers hate grade grubbers!). Maybe one of a student’s many college admissions essays paints her as arrogant (admissions officers hate arrogant applicants). Or maybe the student just comes across as boring, as ordinary, as unexceptional.
So, yes, having SAT or ACT scores as well as SAT Subject Test scores that are within the ballpark of the top schools is important. Very important. Having scores that are too far out of range can certainly make it impossible to get in. But know that these scores aren’t everything. If you didn’t happen to get a perfect SAT score, that doesn’t mean that you can’t get into Harvard while the applicant with a perfect SAT score doesn’t. We help students who don’t have perfect or even close to perfect test scores get into top colleges like Harvard all the time. But, again, this student cannot have a 1,200 total SAT on all three sections. And contrary to the belief of so many folks, if you don’t have the very best SAT or ACT scores, you don’t have to be a recruited athlete, a legacy, a development case, a minority applicant, a first generation college applicant, etc. to get in. Other students get in too. We indeed work with these students every year.
So for those students who got within range on their SAT today (maybe somewhere between the 25th to 50th percentile for these schools) or for those students who only marginally got their SAT Subject Test scores up, chin up. If you’re within range, if you’re ballpark, there’s hope for you yet. After all, that’s where we come in. Interested in a free consultation? Click on our orange button, fill out the form (if you click on this link, you don’t have to find the orange button), and you’ll hear from us via email within the day.