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The SAT | Registration, Types, & Exam Schedule Details

The SAT | Registration, Types, & Exam Schedule Details

The SAT | Registration, Types, & Exam Schedule Details


SAT – Previously referred to as Scholastic Aptitude Test but now known as Scholastic Assessment Test. SAT is a standardized test widely used for college admissions in the United States. In the UK, except Scotland, it is taken by school students as part of the national curriculum. In the U.S, is a test of a student’s verbal and mathematical skills, used for admission to most American colleges. About two million US students and hundreds of thousands worldwide take the SAT anually. Practically every college in the U.S accepts the SAT as a form of entrance exam. Many of those colleges actually require the SAT for admission.

The SAT is preserved, developed, and issued by the College Board, a private, non-profit organization in the United States. It is administered on behalf of the College Board by the Educational Testing Service, which until recently developed the SAT as well.

The SAT has four sections namely;

  • Reading
  • Writing and Language
  • Math (no calculator)
  • Math (calculator allowed).

Reading Test

The Reading Test of the SAT is made up 52 questions and a time limit of 65 minutes in a single section. All questions are multiple-choice and based on reading passages. Tables, graphs, and charts may accompany some passages, but no math is required to correctly answer the corresponding questions.

Writing and Language Test:

The Writing and Language Test of the SAT is made up 44 multiple-choice questions and a time limit of 35 minutes also in a single section. In this section also, all questions are based on reading passages which may be accompanied by tables, graphs, and charts. The candidate will be expected to read the passages, find mistakes or weaknesses in writing, and provide corrections or improvements. Reading passages on this test range in content from topic arguments to nonfiction.


  • The Math Test – No Calculator section has 20 questions (15 multiple choice and 5 grid-in) and lasts 25 minutes.
  • The Math Test – Calculator section has 38 questions (30 multiple choice and 8 grid-in) and lasts 55 minutes. All scientific and most graphing calculators, including Computer Algebra System(CAS) calculators, are permitted on the SAT Math.

A subscore (on a scale of 1 to 15) is reported for each of three categories of math content

  • “Heart of Algebra” (linear equations, systems of linear equations, and linear functions)
  • “Problem Solving and Data Analysis” (statistics, modeling, and problem-solving skills)
  • “Passport to Advanced Math” (non-linear expressions, radicals, exponentials and other topics that form the basis of more advanced math).



In total, the SAT math test is 80 minutes long and includes 58 questions: 45 multiple choice questions and 13 grid-in questions. The multiple choice questions have four possible answers; the grid-in questions are free response and require the test taker to provide an answer.


SAT Candidates may optionally write an essay which, in that case, is the fifth test section. The total time for the scored portion of the SAT is three hours (or three hours and fifty minutes if the optional essay section is taken). Sometime, even candidates who are not writing the optional essay may have a fifth section in the test. In that case, the fifth section is used for the pretesting of questions that may appear on future SAT examination. These questions are not however included in the computation of the candidates SAT score.

When Do They Take SAT

The SAT is often taken during the spring of the junior year or fall of their senior year. The SAT exam is offered nationally every year in August, October, November, December, March, May, and June

Types Of SAT

  • SAT 1
  • SAT 2

SAT 1 is meant to test aptitude and the SAT 2 is meant to test achievement. That is to say, SAT1 tested what you were capable of and the SAT2 tested what you knew.

SATSAT Subject Tests
Other NamesSAT 1, SAT I, SAT Reasoning TestSAT 2, SAT II, SAT Achievement Tests
Format3 hr 45 min multiple-choice test (with one essay question)1 hr multiple-choice test
Subject MatterReading, Writing, Math20 different topics (listed above)
Which Schools Require It?Almost all collegesSome very selective colleges

SAT Subjects

HumanitiesMath and ScienceLanguages (No Listening)Languages (w/ Listening)
LiteratureMath Level 1FrenchFrench with Listening
US HistoryMath Level 2GermanGerman with Listening
World HistoryBiology E/MSpanishSpanish with Listening
ChemistryModern HebrewChinese with Listening
PhysicsItalianJapanese with Listening
LatinKorean with Listening


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