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Be Unique With the
Character Skills Snapshot

The Character Skills Snapshot is the missing piece of the private school admissions puzzle. A holistic measure of student preferences, attitudes, and beliefs toward seven character skills, the Snapshot complements standardized tests such as the SSAT by helping admission teams get to know who your child is in addition to what they know for the test—letting their uniqueness shine.

Hundreds of schools use the Snapshot throughout their enrollment processes. Simply inquire with a school’s admissions office to learn if they’d appreciate seeing your child’s report.

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Why take the Snapshot?

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To give admission teams the full picture.

The Snapshot enriches a school’s understanding of your child by highlighting their skills across seven essential character traits, providing insight into how they will succeed in the school’s programs.

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To help advisors and teachers get to know your child.

The Snapshot is much more than an admission assessment tool. Teachers and advisors use it to understand students better to best support them on their academic journey.

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To gain insight into your child’s character skills.

As a parent, the Snapshot provides a one-of-a-kind view into your child's preferred character skills, so you can offer support and encouragement where it's needed most.

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Listen to admissions and enrollment leaders at Durham Academy in North Carolina and Marlborough School in Los Angeles discuss how their schools utilize the Character Skills Snapshot.

conversation with Kristen Carey
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What are the skills measured?

The Character Skills Snapshot measures student preferences toward seven character skills. It takes approximately 25 minutes to complete, and students entering grades 6–12 can take the Snapshot online from the comfort of their homes. The important part for students to understand is that there are no right or wrong answers.

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Intellectual Engagement

Willingness and enjoyment of pursuing learning opportunities.


Willingness to try new things.

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Prefers to start tasks in a timely manner.


Rebounds from unexpected situations and changing circumstances.


Monitors and controls their thoughts, actions, and what they say to others.

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Social Awareness

Responds to everyday situations appropriately.


Engages in supportive behaviors and emphasizes empathy that enables productive collaboration.

What Are Schools Saying?

Laurel Baker Tew

Assistant Head of School for Enrollment Management

Viewpoint School in Calabasas, Calif.

“The Snapshot helps us evaluate children on the skills they need for lives as adults that will be fundamentally different from the lives we lead today. We need to help our students develop skills for careers that don’t exist yet, and to solve problems that aren’t invented yet.”

What Are Schools Saying?

Victoria Muradi

Director of Strategic Initiatives

Durham Academy in Durham, NC

"Because we've used the Snapshot over a number of years, it continues to reveal itself to us that it's really a tool that can help us determine where we can help students grow and thrive.

What Are Schools Saying?

Jeanette WooChitjian

Director of Enrollment Management and Community Engagement

Marlborough School in Los Angeles, Calif.

"We're looking to see how she sees herself, which is what we love, and then be able to compare it to how her school might see her, how we might see her in the interview or the assessment, how she writes about herself in her writing sample—it's all a package of information on which we're making a decision."

What Are Schools Saying?

Christine Thornton

Associate Director of Admissions

Marlborough School in Los Angeles, Calif.

"Anytime that you have more information about your child and how he or she is seeing themselves, it can only help you navigate different areas."

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How much does the
Snapshot cost?

The Snapshot is $30 when purchased at the same time as an SSAT test, or $60 when purchased separately.

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Fee Waivers

Fee waivers for the Character Skills Snapshot are available from participating schools for eligible families. Please inquire with a school that accepts the Snapshot to see if your family meets the eligibility requirements.‍

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More questions about the Snapshot?

To learn if a school requires the Snapshot, please contact their admissions office directly. For other questions regarding registration, scoring, and the availability of results, visit our Help Center. If you hit a snag while registering, don’t hesitate to contact our friendly Support team.

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Advice Articles

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How to Stand Out With the Character Skills Snapshot

Learn how the Character Skills Snapshot helps your child's uniqueness stand out in the private school admission process.

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The Hidden Benefits of The Character Skills Snapshot

Should your child take the Snapshot? Learn how this character assessment is much more than a private school admission tool.

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Preparing for the Character Skills Snapshot: What Every Family Needs to Know

Your child is taking the Character Skills Snapshot, and you're wondering: How can they prepare? The short answer is that they don't, but there's more to know.

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Let’s take the Snapshot!

We love the enthusiasm, but before students can unveil their character skills, there are a couple of steps to follow. First, if you haven’t already done so, create parent and student accounts for your family within our portal. Once you’ve set up the accounts, give consent within the portal for your children to take the Snapshot. Students will then have the ability to take the Snapshot within their student accounts, and you will control which schools receive the results.

Sign Your Child Up