Questions of the Day – Entrance Tests & Scholarships

Several times a week I’m going to attempt to answer specific questions from my readers directly, in the form of a blog post. Since most questions I receive from homeschooling students and parents are very similar, but asked in many different ways, hopefully this will benefit the entire homeschool community. In the name of simplicity and space, I may rearrange the format of the questions asked and spread the answers out over several days for ease of explanation and readability. If my answer seems overly broad or ambiguous, please realize that the answer most likely will vary from state to state, and college to college. If you’d like further clarification, leave a comment and I’ll do my best to answer it.

Today’s list of questions comes from Dayna. She asks:

Which entrance exams should be taken and when? Do test prep courses help improve scores?

Students should plan on taking both the ACT & the SAT exams their junior year of high school. Depending upon what area of the country you live, or which school your student is applying for, one test or the other may be preferred. For example, in the Midwest, most schools push the ACT. However, on either coast, the SAT is preferred.

Studies have shown that most students scores tend to improve by a couple of points each time they take the tests. Because of this, the earlier a student begins test taking, the more likely his scores will be in the higher ranges needed for scholarship levels come senior year.

Test prep courses most definitely help. There are quite a few good ones out there. The Princeton Review is one of the most popular. is an online resource for test prep that is free of charge.

What is required to qualify for the Tennessee Lottery & Hope scholarships?

The requirements for the Tennessee Lottery & Hope scholarships are the following: Tennessee residency for minimum of one year; 21 or above ACT score; 980 or above SAT score; 3.00 GPA or higher. For further information, check out their website.

I’ll answer more of her questions tomorrow. Got any other suggestions? Please comment if you do!


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