SAT Scores Released Dates 2021

Jun 9, 2021

Are you thinking about when your SAT scores will come out? Waiting for your SAT scores can be distressing because SAT score release usually takes a couple of weeks following your test date. 

How Much Time Do SAT Scores Take To Come Back?

Usually, the first test scores are available online about thirteen days after you take the test. You will first get scores for the multiple-choice section of your test, which includes the Math and Evidence-Based Reading and Writing scores, also your composite score. These scores are generally released thirteen days after you take the test, but some summer test score records can take about five weeks. 

So, when you go through your scores initially, you will only see your composite and section scores. These won’t cover the optional essay section, even if you choose to take this part of the test. 

Usually, essays take a little longer to score because they are checked by two essay scorers, unlike scanning by a machine as the multiple-choice sections are. Your essay score available about three to five days after your multiple-choice scores are released, a sum of 16-18 days after your test date.

Take SAT Subject Tests rather than the regular SAT. You can get your Subject Test scores on the same day when the multiple-choice score is released for the average SAT, which is about thirteen days after the exam date.

When Exactly Will Colleges Receive My Score Reports? 

If you choose to use the four free score reports directly sent to the colleges, they will receive them within ten days of you receiving all of your scores, including the Essay scores. You can say that colleges will get your score report within twenty-eight 28 days of taking the test. 

If you are requesting score reports after getting your scores, it usually takes 1-2 weeks for your scores to arrive and be processed. Colleges have different policies on how often they download new score reports, so it usually average depends on their download frequency.

SAT Score Release Date 2021


*The SAT date of September has been added to the 2020-2021 testing schedule due to COVID-19 test cancellations. To know more about how COVID-19 is affecting standardized testing, check out: PSAT-Related Assessment and SAT Coronavirus Updates

Score Release Dates Predicted of Fall 2021 

If you observe, you’ll see that the SAT score release dates follow a pattern only if they aren’t a summer administration. 

  • The multiple-choice results come out 13 days after the test date.
  • The essay scores result come out 3-5 days after.
  • Colleges receive scores ten days after you receive all your scores.

Following this pattern, here’s what we can expect the score release dates will be for Fall 2021. They are provisional and need to be confirmed by the College Board.


Exactly At What Time Are SAT Scores Released?

SAT scores usually come out in packs throughout the day, and some scores are released as early as 5 AM Eastern Time (2 AM Pacific Time). Besides that, don’t expect them as early as 5 AM and stop stressing around. Sometimes scores aren’t out until the late afternoon.

How Can I Get My SAT Scores? 

The easiest and fastest way to get your SAT scores is through your online CollegeBoard account. You just have to visit the College Board homepage and click on the blue box that shows you to log in with your username and password. Then, you have to click on the “My SAT” link below your name. You’ll then be able to see all your available test scores, which are listed by test date.

Is It a Good Idea To Send Your SAT Scores to Test-Optional Schools?

Because of the going pandemic, many colleges have gone test-optional. This is because many SAT administrations were canceled. After all, it was not safe for students to take the test. 

 If you have an SAT score inside 60 points of the 25th percentile for accepted students, you should submit it. For instance, if you’re applying to Princeton, where the 25th percentile SAT score is 1450, and you received 1390, you should send your score. 

 Always keep in mind that SAT scores are lower this year, partly because many students can only sit for the exam once—the average score has dropped from 1059 to 1051, which indicates that super scores are also lower.

How to Understand Your SAT Score 

Composite Score: Scoring the test is honestly straightforward. The total composite SAT scores range from 400-1600 points, summed up from two sections: Math and Evidence-Based Reading and Writing, with each worth 200-800 points. 

The College Board is responsible for conducting the SAT, and the test was redesigned in 2016 with the intent of an “average” total score being 1000—squarely in the middle of the 400 minimum score and 1600 maximum score. With that information, you will know how you can stack up against other test-takers.   

Percentiles: A better way to understand your SAT score more scientifically to understand your SAT score is to use percentiles, which the College Board publishes yearly. Your score report will list two percentiles, one as a Nationally Representative Sample and one as a User Percentile.

The former compares your score to typical high school juniors and seniors, and the latter corresponds to actual SAT test-takers. The User Percentile is more helpful as a data point. Your User percentile shows you how you “ranked” compared to other students. For instance, if you scored in the 50% percentile, you scored at or above 50% of other SAT students.  

Subscores: The SAT also gives seven subscores ranging from 1-15, four from the Reading and Writing and Language Sections (Words in Context, Command of Evidence, Expression of Ideas, and Standard English Conventions), and three from the Math test (Problem Solving, Heart of Algebra, and Data Analysis). 

Subscores are in color-code to identify strengths and weaknesses to make it look easy—green meaning on track for college readiness, yellow translating to close to being on track for college readiness, strengthening skills, and red indicating a need to enhance skills. Subscores are an excellent way for students to identify where to focus their energy if they’re planning on retaking the SAT! 

How Can I Know If My SAT Score is Satisfactory?

As per the College Board, the average SAT score is 1051, with the average Math score at 523 and the average Evidence-Based Reading and Writing score at 528. You don’t have to be afraid. These do not affect how your SAT score will influence your chances of getting into your dream school.

However, to put your SAT score in context, check the average SAT scores for incoming first-year students at the schools you want to go to and see how you compare. The majority of colleges declare the middle 50% SAT scores of the students they have accepted. 

If you’re confused, not sure what that means, the middle 50% is a range of scores between the 25th percentile and the 75th—which is an excellent demonstration of the kind of score you’ll need to get accepted. As an example of middle 50% scores, Princeton University had scores ranging from 1450-1600 for the class of 2024, with a Math score of 740-800 and an Evidenced-based Reading and Writing score of 710-800. 

Remember, these numbers indicate the average student—25% of students will have scored below the middle 50%, and 25% will have a higher score. That being said, scoring on the high end of the range, or above it, will increase your odds of getting accepted. 

As I’ve mentioned earlier, scores are lower for the 2020-2021 cycle because students didn’t have as many opportunities to take the SAT, if at all. So, it’s perfectly fine if your score is somewhat lower than the 25th percentile in the time of COVID-19.

How Does Your SAT Score Affect Your College Chances?

Selective colleges use a metric known as Academic Index (AI) to describe the strength of students’ grades and test scores. If your AI is too low, there is a chance that a school might not even review the rest of your application. That’s why it’s so essential to have a solid academic profile.

Check out the impact of your SAT score on the College Admissions Calculator. With the help of this calculator, you will know how your score stacks up against other applicants, and it will give you tips on developing the rest of your profile, including grades and extracurriculars.

You can also search for colleges based on your likings like cost, location, major, and more. 

What Can You Do If Your SAT Score Is Too Low?

If you didn’t get your dream SAT score, don’t worry. Unless it’s your senior year and the month of December, you probably have time to develop significantly before applying to college. If you want to improve your score, review the SAT calendar and set your visions on a new test date. After that, go through your entire score report to get a good sense of what areas you struggle with the most. Sharpen these areas to improve your score over the next few weeks.

If it is already your senior year, always remember that you can always apply test-optional. Especially during this year! 

Remember that if your score is too low, it indicates that you aren’t academically ready for that college, particularly if your grades and course difficulty don’t meet the average of accepted students. It’s also essential to be realistic and apply to colleges where you have a better chance of getting in.

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