SAT Test Information
Get ready to take the SAT!
Nearly every college in America accepts the SAT or Subject Tests as a part of its admissions process. That's why more than two million students take the SAT every year!
How to Register and Pay for the SAT
All registration must be done through the College Board, the makers of the SAT. You can register for the Official test online at www.collegeboard.org or by calling (800) 728-7267.
The New SAT
The SAT measures critical reading, higher mathematics, and writing skills-the elements that are considered essential for success in college. The New SAT will take 3 hours and 45 minutes to complete and includes the following three scored sections:
- Critical Reading - short and long reading passages, plus sentence completion.
- Mathematics - advanced math topics including Numbers and Operations; Algebra I, II, and Functions; Geometry; and Statistics, Probability, and Data Analysis.
- Writing - an essay, plus a multiple-choice section on improving sentences and paragraphs, and identifying sentence errors. On the essay portion you will be asked to choose a position on a topic, and then logically support that position. There is no correct answer; it's about how persuasive your argument is and how well you present your views. You will be given all the information you need to choose your position and write the essay without having prior knowledge of the subject.
Colleges and universities use the SAT as a primary determinant in the admissions process, and a high SAT score increases your chances of admission to the college of your choice. During the admissions process SAT scores are compared with the scores of other applicants, and scores can also be used as a basis for awarding merit-based financial aid.
Each main section is scored on a scale of 200 to 800-one score for Math, one for Critical Reading, and one for Writing. Your total score will range between 600 and a perfect 1600. The Writing section has two subscores-a multiple-choice subscore on a scale of 20-80 and an essay subscore of 2-12.
Score reports are available on the College Board's website (www.collegeboard.com) approximately 2 weeks after the test date. Score reports are mailed 3 ½ weeks after the test date.
When to Take the SAT
We recommend that students take the SAT in the spring of their junior year, and possibly again in the fall of their senior year. The PSAT is offered in October and is usually taken in the student's sophomore year or fall of their junior year. The test is administered several times a year and the SAT can be taken multiple times with no penalty.
The Unscored Section
In addition, there is one 25-minute unscored section, known as the variable or equating section. This unscored section may be either a critical reading, math, or writing multiple-choice section. This unscored section does not count toward the final score, but is used to try out new questions for future editions of the SAT and to ensure that scores on new editions of the SAT are comparable to scores on earlier editions of the test.
The 25-minute essay will always be the first section of the SAT, and the 10-minute multiple-choice writing section will always be the final section. The remaining six 25-minute sections can appear in any order, as can the two 20-minute sections. Test takers sitting next to each other in the same testing session may have test books with entirely different sections.
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