Admission tests

Unlike the Netherlands, high schools in the United States don’t require a final examination. As a result, American universities look at standardized admission exam results to assess the level of their applicants. The exams required for admission depends on the university and the type and level of the subject you intend to major in. All universities can set their own admission requirements.

The American Book Center in Amsterdam and The Hague offers practice books for all exams. You can find online practice materials in each text section below.

SAT versus ACT

Many American universities will require the submission of SAT or ACT scores as part of their bachelor’s program admissions criteria. Make sure to check the website of your university to make sure whether you are required to take the SAT or ACT. Many competitive schools also require you to complete the optional essay part of the exams. Keep this in mind when registering for the exam. Many students take the exam twice. If possible, take the exam once in spring and once in early fall of your final year. You can take the test more often, although two attempts will usually offer a clear indication of your score capacities.

Tips:
  • If you are planning on obtaining an associate’s degree at a community college, you won’t need to take the SAT or ACT.
  • More and more universities are test optional, which means that they will not hold it against applicants who do not submit scores. You may still be required to submit your scores if you want to apply to financial funding. A full list of test optional institutions can be found on Fairtest.

Choose

You only need to take one test. Which test you take depends on your personal preference. Please note that the SAT has been revised in March 2016 to be more similar to the ACT, although some notable differences remain: ACT offers a science component while the SAT does not. There is also a distinct difference in the amount of questions (SAT: 154, ACT: 215) and the time you receive to answer them (SAT: 1 minute and 10 seconds per question, ACT: 49 seconds per question). Due to the higher total of questions on the ACT you will have to work faster, although the exam is more forgiving as a result.

Students taking the N&G or N&T school profile often prefer the ACT, while C&M and E&M students gravitate towards the SAT. You can take free sample tests on each exam’s website to find out which version plays to your strengths.

 

ACT

The ACT is a multiple choice test and takes two hours and 55 minutes to complete. The optional essay part takes another 40 minutes to complete. The exam consists of four parts: English, Mathematics, reading, and science. Your score will be calculated on a scale from 1 – 36. You can find more information about the required scores on your university’s website.

You can take the ACT five times a year in the Netherlands: in early February, mid-April, early June, early September, the end of October, and early December. You can find more information at the ACT. Keep in mind that you have to complete your registration five to six weeks prior to your desired test date. The test will cost $80 to $95, depending on the essay component.

You can directly forward your exam score to up to four universities for free, or have them sent at a later date for a small fee. Universities will only accept the official score reports that were sent directly to them.

You can download practice material at the ACT website. You can find practice books and material through the ACT Academy.

Would you like to apply for the Campus Scholarship Program?

Do not forget to mention the score recipient code of the Fulbright Commission during registration. You score will be forwarded to us automatically and without any costs.

  • ACT: 9073

SAT

The SAT is a multiple choice test, taking three hours to complete. The optional essay part takes an additional 50 minutes to complete. The text consists of three parts: reading, writing and language skills, and math. Your score will be calculated on a scale from 400 and 1600. You can find more information about the required scores on your university’s website.

You can take the SAT several times a year in the Netherlands: usually the first Saturday of March, May, October, and December. Check Collegeboard for more information about these dates. Keep in mind that you need to have completed your registration four weeks prior to your desired test date.  You can register online through Collegeboard. The test will cost $80 to $95, depending on the essay component.

You can directly forward your score to up to four universities for free, or have them sent at a later date for a small fee. Universities will only accept the official score reports that were sent directly to them.

You can download practice material at Collegeboard. Khan Academy offers a free online preparatory course.

Would you like to apply for the Campus Scholarship Program?

Do not forget to mention the score recipient code of the Fulbright Commission during registration. You score will be forwarded to us automatically and without any costs.

  • SAT: 6742
SAT Subject Tests

Some universities also require (usually two) subject test results alongside your SAT or ACT scores. Make sure to see whether these tests are essential for admission at your university, and if so, whether this requirement also applies to international students. Several schools make an exception for non-US applicants. Keep in mind that you cannot take the SAT and the SAT Subject Tests simultaneously, so make sure to plan your examination dates accordingly.

The Subject Test is a multiple choice exam that takes an hour to complete. You can take up to three Subject Tests per test day. You can use the Collegeboard website to help you decide which tests to take. You can find information about the requirements to be eligible to take the tests, such as the total amount of class hours per subject required in order to successfully complete a Subject Test, and which topics are discussed in the test. You can also look at the example questions to get a better idea of what to expect.

 

The available Subject Tests are:

  • English literature
  • US History
  • World history
  • Mathematics level 1 and 2
  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Physics
  • Chinese (reading and listening)
  • French (reading)
  • French (reading and listening)
  • German (reading)
  • German (reading and listening)
  • Modern Hebrew (reading)
  • Italian (reading)
  • Japanese (reading and listening)
  • Korean (reading and listening)
  • Latin (reading)
  • Spanish (reading)
  • Spanish (reading and listening)

You can find practice material at Collegeboard and Khan Academy.