Don't you just wish sometimes people would tell you EXACTLY what tests a high school student needs to take?  Unfortunately, it's not that easy!

The number and type of tests depend on the college your student may attend.  Some will require certain tests, or allow other tests, or encourage or discourage community college classes.  Sadly, that means no pat answers to what seems like a simple questions.

It can be helpful, though, to think about three reasons WHY you might give your child certain tests.

1.  Meet requirements

Take the tests that are required by the college your student will attend.  Almost all colleges require the SAT or ACT, but some will require subject tests.  Others don't "require" AP exams but will "expect" those test scores of applicants.  So know what your colleges require and expect from applicants.  If they require additional tests, it's often AP or SAT subject tests.

2. Proof of rigorous education

Some colleges will like to see outside documentation from tests or community college classes.  For them, outside documentation will provide the proof of your homeschool transcript - back up documentation that your homeschool grades are reasonable and true.  For proof of rigorous education, they will often accept test or community college class for that information.

3. College credits

Some universities will give you college credits for certain tests, and that can shorten the numbers of years your child spends in college.  That can add up to some pretty hefty savings!  Do your research carefully to see if your college will provide college credits for CLEP or AP or community college courses.  Each university will have their own policy, so you have to check.

When deciding which tests to take, remember there is a combination of factors to consider: meeting requirements, proof of education, and earning college credits.

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