summer reading outside

When your child thinks about their summer break, ACT and SAT test prep are likely the furthest thing from their mind. They’ve probably made plans to spend time with friends, work part-time, or enjoy their down time. However, summer test prep is a great way for your child to get a head start on the college application process while still making time for fun and relaxation.

How Early Can Your Child Start Test Prep?

Many students begin SAT or ACT prep as early as freshman year, which helps them to establish a solid foundation that will lead to top test scores later on. However, students should wait to take the SAT or ACT until at least the summer after sophomore year.

Both the SAT and the ACT include math concepts that students will not master until they have had the opportunity to take both Algebra 2 and Geometry in school, which usually happens in freshman and sophomore years.

In addition, many colleges explicitly prefer test scores from 11th or 12th grade, believing that more recent scores better represent a student’s academic skills at the time of admission.

Can You Take the ACT and SAT Over the Summer?

Yes, you can take the ACT and SAT during the summer. There are several summer test dates for both exams. In 2024, the SAT offers two summer test dates, while the ACT offers three.


Registration Deadline* Deadline for Changes, Regular Cancellation, and Late Registration SAT Test Date
May 16, 2024 May 21, 2024 June 1, 2024
TBD TBD August 24, 2024

*If your child plans to borrow a device from the College Board, they must register and request their device at least 30 days before test day.

Regular Registration Deadline Late Registration Deadline Photo Upload and Standby Deadline ACT Test Date
May 3, 2024 May 19, 2024 May 31, 2024 June 8, 2024
June 7, 2024 June 21, 2024 July 5, 2024 July 13, 2024*
August 9, 2024 August 25, 2024 September 6, 2024 September 14, 2024

*No test centers are scheduled in New York for the July test date.

Should Your Child Study for the ACT and SAT in the Summer?

If you haven’t already, you should work test prep into your child’s summer plans.

Many students focus on test prep during the school year, but this isn’t always ideal. Your child’s attention will be split between writing personal statements, studying for upcoming exams, participating in extracurricular activities, and more. Having so much on their plate can make junior year feel overwhelming.

By enrolling your child in a test prep program over the summer, you can help reduce some of this stress. Some benefits studying for the SAT over the summer can offer your child include…

More Time to Focus on Test Prep

During the school year, your child’s attention will be divided between homework, school exams, extracurricular activities, and more. With so many things on their plate, adding test prep could make the academic year feel overwhelming and cause them to burn out. Waiting until the summer to begin test prep allows them to focus solely on improving their scores.

In fact, if your child completes SAT and ACT test prep during the summer between their sophomore and junior year, they could accelerate their college admissions timeline. If your child plans on taking the SAT, they can finalize their scores as early as August 24. If they’re taking the ACT, they can finalize their scores as early as July 13.

Knowing their scores early gives your child more time to work on their personal statements, participate in extracurricular or volunteer activities, and enjoy their remaining time in high school.

More Flexibility Over When They Take the Exam

Summer test prep gives your student the option to take their test either at the end of the summer or beginning of fall. If your child doesn’t earn the score they want the first time, this flexibility allows them to retake the exam without delaying their desired timeline. This could help reduce the stress they may feel on test day, which could improve their performance.

If your child is approaching the fall of their senior year, preparing over the summer could help them use their time more effectively. Rather than juggling test prep alongside their academic workload and college applications, preparing over the summer gives them more time. This extra time could allow them to still apply to colleges through early admission and still enjoy their senior year.

How Do You Prepare for the SAT in the Summer?

Since your child has extra time to dedicate to their studies over the summer, they have more options for SAT test prep. At C2 Education, we offer customized test prep and summer boot camps. Both options tailor the curriculum to your child’s unique needs but vary in intensity.

Our boot camps are an ideal fit if your child has a hectic summer schedule or would prefer to get all their studying done in a shorter amount of time. Despite this, your child can go at their own pace and receive individualized feedback and support. Alternatively, if your child wants to prepare at a more relaxed place, our regular ACT and SAT test prep programs may be a better fit.

Help Your Child Make the Most of Their Summer with Test Prep

Summer’s a great time for your child to prepare for standardized tests without the pressures of the school year. It removes some stress they may feel during the fall as it crosses two major parts of the college application process off their list. This can provide a focused approach and flexibility when scheduling exams.

C2 Education offers customized and intensive ACT and SAT test prep options to cater to different learning paces and schedules. By opting for summer test prep, you can help alleviate some of your child’s workload during the school year. Whether you choose to enroll your child in one of our summer boot camps or our regular test prep programs, your child will receive the attention and guidance to succeed.

Interested in learning more about our summer test prep programs and bootcamps? Call us at (866) 452-1256 or find a C2 center near you!