College planning requires applications, research and standardized testing.  The most commonly taken and submitted college preparatory tests in the U.S. are the ACT and the SAT and, until recently, the SAT was favored most among college admissions officers.

Interestingly, that trend has changed. The two tests have gained equal status amongst colleges and student applicants, and most students are taking both. The New York Times profiles students who have devoted their junior years of high school to preparation and testing. The question we’re left with: Is it worth it?

For many students, the preparation for the ACT and SAT means time away from family, friends and social activities. Even students who take each of the tests multiple times find that their scores only improve marginally. But many students and parents believe it best to take both tests multiple times to put them in the best light with admissions officers.

This ‘do whatever it takes’ mentality means the mad college scramble is here to stay – one test after another, and another, and another…