Publication Date

Summer 2017

Document Type

Project Summary

Degree Name

Master of Science



First Advisor

Dianna Galante, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Xiabo She, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Robert A. Kaufman


For years schools have worked to create mathematics curricula that aim to both build students’ understanding of the course content and prepare them for questions styled like those on their college entrance exam. In previous years, the exam mandated by the state of Illinois was the ACT (American College Testing); however, starting with the 2016-2017 school year the policy has now changed to administer the SAT (Scholastic Assessment Test). This transition poses many potential implications on the performance of students. In order to help identify these implications, both exams were studied at great depth. The following paper will focus on the similarities and differences in mathematics tests of the ACT and SAT. The paper also presents both the potential benefits and consequences for the eleventh-grade students who will be the first required by the state of Illinois to take the SAT, and the larger possible ramifications their performance on the mathematics portion holds on the public schools.