College Admissions Changing Landscape | Winward Academy


College Admission Landscape Updates

To keep families informed about the college admissions landscape during this uncertain time, this blog post is updated regularly. 


Winward Academy has offered and continues to offer webinars with updates, strategic guidance, and advice for planning and preparation. Here is a list of webinars available to view:

  • Don’t Get Lost In the Pile: How to Avoid Frequent College Application Mistakes – link
  • ACT vs SAT – How to Decide Which Test to Take – link
  • Applying to College During Coronavirus: How to Position Yourself for Success – link
  • Quaranteenagers: Strategies for Coping with an Uncertain Fall Semester – link

Virtual Practice Test Proctoring

Winward Academy is offering FREE proctored practice tests to students across the US. These exams are REAL past tests, so students get an authentic experience and an accurate sense of how they’re performing. We have an upcoming ACT practice test on October 3 and an SAT practice test on October 17.

From the comfort of their homes, students can sit for a practice test monitored by a live, virtual proctor. Students immediately score their exams and gain access to a detailed analysis that breaks down their specific strengths and weaknesses.

If the virtual practice exam dates do not work well with your schedule, then please contact us to request instructions to self-proctor at your convenience. Call us at 858.869.5502 or email with any questions. Please note that extended time accommodations are also available.

All students receive the following for FREE:

  • A full-length, official ACT® or SAT® exam with step-by-step explanations to all questions
  • Immediate access to a customized dashboard with their strengths and weaknesses broken down by concept
  • 14 days of limited access to Winward Academy’s award-winning test prep

How it works:

  • You Register for the Free Practice Test – please go to this link to sign up for an ACT practice test or SAT practice test, and then we’ll send you the URL to join Saturday’s practice
  • We Send You a Practice Test – the day before, we’ll email the parent or guardian with a PDF copy of a past real ACT exam and printing instructions
  • You Join Us on Saturday Morning – you’ll join the online testing room and meet your proctor who will guide how you move through the sections
  • You Learn From Your Mistakes – at the end of the test, your proctor will provide instructions to grade your exam and to review and learn from your mistakes

ACT Updates

ACT added three test dates for the Fall testing season. See below for a calendar of Fall 2020 ACT test dates:

Saturday, September 12

Sunday, September 13

Saturday, September 19 (new)

Saturday, October 10 (new)

Saturday, October 17 (new)

Saturday, October 24

Sunday, October 25

Saturday, December 12

Given that spots fill up quickly, be sure to register as soon as possible. ACT’s original plan to start section re-testing and computer-based ACT administration in September 2020 have been postponed until 2021. You can access ACT’s COVID-19 updates to stay up-to-date.

If you’re interested in reviewing 2021 administrations, you may review a full list of 2020-2021 ACT test dates.

SAT Updates

CollegeBoard added an additional test date for SAT only in the Fall season. Please see below for a calendar of Fall 2020 SAT test dates:

Saturday, August 29

Saturday, September 26 (new test date for SAT only, no Subject Tests)

Saturday, October 3

Saturday, November 7

Saturday, December 5

January 2021 TBD (CollegBoard will announce this Fall if it’s adding another exam)

Given that spots fill up quickly, be sure to register ASAP. If you’re interested in reviewing 2021 administrations, you may review a full list of 2020-2021 ACT test dates.

CollegeBoard is planning to keep all Fall dates and then cancellations will occur by individual location. Please ensure that you carefully monitor your email for any notifications of site cancellations or changes leading up to your Fall exam. You may also check the list of closures provided by CollegeBoard.

Test-Optional Policies

Many colleges and universities have become test optional due to COVID-19 test cancellations in the Spring.

Do you like what you’ve read? Please click the links to share with friends who would also benefit from updates about the evolving college admissions testing landscape.

About Winward Academy – Winward Academy is one of the world’s leading innovators in the online education space, providing web-based academic support that enhances students’ knowledge, confidence, and competitiveness in middle and high school academics and in college applications. We help thousands of students every year by providing personalized, comprehensive ACT and SAT test preparation and extensive math curriculum support. The Winward Academy learning platform honors over 40 years of education and cognitive psychology research, incorporating proven techniques that promote effective learning.

Winward Academy’s unmatched reputation is wholly attributable to our students’ exceptional success and to the trust earned among students, parents, and schools around the world.

Jennifer Winward, Ph.D.

Dr. Jennifer Winward is a renowned college instructor, a distinguished 20-year veteran of high school tutoring, and the founder and lead instructor of Winward Academy. She earned her Ph.D. specializing in adolescent brain development and adolescent learning. She is a member of Phi Beta Kappa and graduated summa cum laude with highest distinction honors. Dr. Winward has been widely recognized for her academic success, published research, and philanthropic efforts with awards from the President of the United States, the California State Assembly, Rotary International, the Marin County School Administrator Association, the American Psychological Association, and the National Science Foundation.