Is the CLT a Good Alternative to the SAT or ACT Test?

Is the CLT a Good Alternative to the SAT or ACT Test?

College may be on the horizon for your homeschool student and testing is one of the first steps in getting accepted into the college of their choice. The two most recognized tests being the SAT (Scholastic Assessment Test) and the ACT. (American College Test) A third test option is becoming more and more accepted by colleges around the country and it is called the CLT (Classic Learning Test).

The question is- “Which test is most appropriate for the educational goals that my student has?” First, take a look at the basics of each test. 

SAT (Scholastic Assessment Test)- This particular test is an indicator for colleges of how prepared a high school student is for college level studies. The two SAT sections include Math, Evidence-based Reading and Writing and also an optional Essay section. The testing takes 3 hours but add in 50 minutes if the student is doing the essay section. 

ACT (American College Test)- This test also is supposed to determine if your student is ready for college classes. It measures a student’s skills in the areas of- English, math, reading, science and also has an optional essay section. Each test is timed as follows-Engish-45 minutes, Math-60 minutes, Reading-35 minutes, Science-35 minutes, and Writing-40 minutes. This test is taken when students are in grade 11 and 12 so that scores can be submitted as a part of the college application process. 

What about the CLT? (Classic Learning Test)- This test is unique as it strives to test the junction between intellect and virtue. Unlike the SAT and ACT which is based on common core, as the name states, the CLT has more of a classical education focus. Logic and reasoning are included in this test to give a whole different view on what an individual student knows. The CLT is a two-hour online test that is done at a testing center with a proctor. The test covers English, Verbal Reasoning, Reading, Grammar, Writing, Math, and Quantitative Reasoning. There is no science portion to the text but some of the passages are science-based. Like the other two tests, there is an optional essay section that is 30 minutes.

So which test should your student take and prepare for? For homeschoolers, especially those that learned through classical education, the CLT might be the best indicator of college readiness. First though, have your student take a look at the college’s requirements from the colleges they are interested in to find out which tests are accepted.  Just like homeschooling, you know your child best so decide with your student which test would best fit your student so they can prepare in advance for the test. 







Joy Capps is a homeschool bookworm residing in the mountains of western North Carolina. The only one who loves books more is her 16-year-old daughter. They both enjoy perusing old bookstores for treasures and sniffing books. Her son who is 18 has special needs, is the social butterfly of the family and has never met a stranger. Although she is originally from South Dakota she now calls North Carolina her home and she and her family love exploring the great outdoors. Her family has been homeschooling since 2005.

September 19, 2019


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