The SAT: Everything You Need to Know
This is a standardized evaluation test dispensed by the Educational Testing Service (ETS) standing in the stead of the non-profit College Board. This test assesses math, reading, and writing skills. The SAT appears with the purpose of measuring a high school student’s college readiness and providing schools with one common data point that can be utilized to compare all applicants. College admission officers review an applicant’s standardized test scores alongside their high school GPA, the classes they took in high school, extracurricular activities, letters of recommendation from mentors or teachers, personal essays, and admission interviews. The importance of SAT scores in the college application process varies from one school to another. However, usually, the higher a student scores on the SAT or the ACT, the more option they get for attending and paying for college.
Most universities and colleges in the United States accept the SAT, and many of them want to see scores from either the ACT or the SAT. The length of the SAT is 3 hours, and each of the sections has fixed testing times. Students get 65 minutes for the reading section, 35 minutes for the writing section, and 80 minutes for the math section. The math section is again divided into two sub-sections: no calculator section (25 minutes) and calculator section (55 minutes). The numbers of questions are 52 (reading), 44 (writing), and 58 (math).
Each of two major sections (math and evidence-based reading and writing) is scored on a scale between 200 and 800 points. A student’s SAT score is the total of these section scores. Therefore, a student’s total SAT score will be between 400 and 1600.
The deadlines for SAT registration fall about five weeks prior to each test date. Students can visit the College Board website to register online.
Students need to consider some important aspects when preparing for the SAT. First, it’s very important to get familiarized with the content of the SAT. Students should note that preparing for SAT reading will be different than preparing for SAT writing, which will be different than preparing for SAT math. Next, students should figure out the areas they’re weak in. The best method to do this is to take a timed practice test. The College Board has released eight free practice tests that students can take either online or offline. Once a practice test is taken, students can use the provided scoring guidelines to know their score, which helps in figuring out their strengths and weaknesses.