Standardized testing is part of most private schools' admissions requirements. The two most commonly used independent school tests are the SSAT
or Secondary School Admission Test and the ISEE
or Independent School Entrance Examination.
Many parents and students focus too much on standardized test scores. While test scores are important, they are only one of many benchmarks which an admissions committee will review.
What is being tested?
What are schools looking for? Basically, schools want to assess language and mathematics skills. Reading comprehension, vocabulary, reasoning, mathematical concepts and problems and more are the substance of most standardized tests.
When can you take the test?
SSAT and ISEE are offered several times a year in many locations nationwide. For registration deadlines, fees and other details consult their sites. You can register in a variety of ways incuding online, by telephone, via mail and by fax. If you need assistance paying the examination fees, there are fee waiver programs available.
Can you practice for the test?
All the common admissions tests have spawned a wide range of test preparation solutions. SSAT and ISEE have excellent, in-depth guides on their sites which give sample questions and much more. But the plain truth is that there is no point cramming for a standardized test. Become familiar with the testing format and the type of questions asked. Apart from that, do the best you can!