We have the answers to your questions about the new redesigned SAT including the new
structure, types of questions you'll see on the exam as well as the costs and when
to take the exam. Applying to college is the next logical step and we have many resources
to help you begin the process.
Common Questions about the SAT
What is the SAT?
The new redesigned SAT exam measures the skills and knowledge students learn in school
incluiding reading, writing, and math. It doesn't test logic or abstract reasoning
but what you need to succeed in college.
The exam is a paper based test that consists of three (35-80 minute) sections of multiple-choice
questions in Evidence Based Reading and Writing, mathematics, and an optional essay
writing section. Visit their official SAT website for more information.
When is the SAT exam offered?
The SAT exam is administered between September and June each year. Upcoming test dates
are May 7, June 4, October 1, November 5, and December 3, 2016.
Who should take the SAT?
The SAT is recommended and required by many 2-year and 4-year colleges, universities, and
technical schools. It is accepted by all US colleges. Check with the colleges you
are interested in attending and ask them for the average test score. Any current high
school junior or senior or high school/GED graduate who is considering enrolling in
college should take the SAT exam.
What sections are covered on the test?
The test consists of 154 questions (155 if you include the essay) and takes approximately
3 hours to complete.
Evidence Based Reading and Writing Section:
Reading Test - 52 questions for 65 minutes
Writing and Language Test - 44 questions for 35 minutes
58 questions for 80 minutes
Optional Writing Essay:
1 question for 50 minutes
How much does it cost?
The fee for the test is $54.50 with the optional writing test and $43.00 without the
writing essay. Please note that the price changes frequently. Late registration and
to change your test date costs between $15-$28.
Fee waivers are available. Check with your high school guidance counselor for more
The total score is the sum of two sections on a range of 400-1600 and the essay is
scored on a scale of 2-8. Each subtest is scored. There is no penalty for guessing
and your raw score is the number of questions answered correctly. This score is converted
on the 200-800 scale called equating. The final or composite score is the average
of the scores learned on each of the subtests.
What is a good score?
A good score depends on the college you are interested in attending and their requirements. Each
college is different and you should check with them to determine their average scores.
How do I contact the SAT?
You can contact SAT at 888-SAT-HELP or visit their SAT website.
Can I retake the SAT?
Yes, you can take the SAT multiple times. It is recommended that students take it
twice, once as a junior and again as a senior. You are allowed to send your scores
for free to four colleges. The College Board will send your score to your high school and
to the colleges you select. There is a fee to send your score to more than four institutions or
to modify your original selection.
Can I take a practice test?
Yes, practice tests and materials are available free on the SAT website.
SAT makes arrangements for test takers that need special accommodations. However,
you must submit an Accommodations Request Form. Visit the SAT website for information
about requesting accommodations and special testing centers.