College entrance test dates

College admissions tests — the ACT and SAT — are a huge part of the college application process for high school students. School counselors typically provide students with the lowdown on when to take these all-important tests. In addition, most public high schools offer the ACT on a school day. Following is a brief guide about how to register for the Saturday tests and the test dates for the fall and winter.

ACT

Sign up online (actstudent.org/regist/) or use the packet provided by your high school counselor or found in your school’s college guidance office. The cost is $36.50 for the test without a writing portion and $52.50 for the exam with the writing test. Fees include the option of sending scores to four colleges of your choice for free; the fee for additional schools is $11 per school.

Saturday test dates will be Oct. 26 (Sept. 27 registration); Dec. 14 (Nov. 8 registration); and Feb. 8, 2014 (Jan. 10, 2014 registration). For more information about ACT registration, call (319) 337-1270.

SAT

Students can register online (sat.collegeboard.org/home) or through packets provided by high schools. The cost is $51 for the basic SAT. Additional optional fees include a $24.50 registration fee for basic subject tests, $24 for language with listening tests and $13 for all other subject tests. Registering by phone costs another $15. Fees include sending scores to four colleges of your choice for free; the fee for additional schools is $11.25 per school.

Saturday test dates will be Nov. 2 (Oct. 3 registration), Dec. 7. (Nov. 8 registration), Jan. 25, 2014 (Dec. 27 registration).

For more information about SAT registration, call (866) 630-9305.

Each testing service does provide late and standby registration for a fee; visit their websites for more information.