SAT Scores for admission purposes

The SAT is a standardized test conducted by College Board (a non-profit organization) and is used by colleges in the United States, Canada and other countries for admissions of undergraduate students. Universities such as Flame University, Ahmedabad University, Jai Hind College, O.P Jindal Global University and many more such colleges in India have started accepting SAT scores for admission purposes.

The SAT measures the writing, analytical, and problem-solving skills of students applying to colleges. The SATs are mainly used to measure the students’ readiness to move on from their high schools to college. The SAT supplements the student’s grades while putting their performances in a global perspective. The College Board defines the SAT as “a measure of the critical thinking skills you will need for academic success in college.” 

How to beat the SATs?

The SAT is always referred to as a game. It is a game where there are set rules and patterns that keep repeating themselves. To beat the SAT, you just need to practice, learn the patterns and repeat. 

If you understand how each set of questions work and have learned through enough practice problems to recognize the traps and tricks set by the problem writers, you will know the test before even taking it!

The SAT has various strategies on how to take the test. Educated guessing, substitution and plugging in answer choices are some of them.

Structure

The English sections are the first and second section on the SAT. 

The SAT Reading Test is comprised entirely of multiple-choice questions based on passages. Specifically, it includes 52 multiple-choice questions based on five passages that you’ll read and respond to over the course of 65 minutes. Each of the passages will be between 500-750 words unless it is paired with another passage, in which case the passage pair will total 500-750 words between the two of them.

Some of the passages will be paired with other passages, and some passages will include additional informational graphics such as tables, graphs, or charts. You’ll need to be able to interpret these visuals, but no math will be required on this part of the SAT.

The writing is the second section. The SAT Writing and Language Test consists of 44 multiple-choice questions that you’ll need to answer in 35 minutes. 

All the questions on the Writing and Language Test are based on written passages. There are four written passages on the test, each between 400-450 words. Some passages are accompanied by informational graphics, like tables, graphs, or charts, but no math will be required on this portion of the test. The passages on the exam will consist of one non-fiction narrative passage, one to two informative/explanatory texts, and one to two argumentative or persuasive pieces. 

The passages on the Writing and Language section will be presented alongside the associated questions, with the passages presented in the left-hand column and the questions presented in the right-hand column. Question numbers will be embedded in the text of the passage as well to help you locate the associated text. There may also be other forms of notation, including underlining, which will help guide you to what part of the passage is being tested at any given point. Some questions may also ask about the passage as a whole.

The Math is the third and fourth section, divided into non-calculator and calculator sections respectively. The SAT Math section consists of 58 questions to be completed over the course of 80 minutes. Most of them are multiple-choice questions, but 13 are grid-in questions that ask you to come up with a free-response answer rather than selecting it from available options. Some parts of the test include several questions about a single scenario, and others are stand-alone questions. 

The last section is the optional essay section. This section includes a passage between 650-700 words long that you will read and then critique. You will have 50 minutes to read the passage, plan your writing, and write your essay. 

The passage you are asked to assess varies from test to test, but it is always written for a broad audience and taken from published works. Unlike on the Writing and Language section, the Essay passage is not crafted to intentionally include organizational and grammatical errors. This passage will argue a point; use logical reasoning and evidence to support claims; and examine ideas, debates, or trends in the arts, science, civics, cultural studies, or politics.

Section, Time, Questions and Testing Area of SAT

Scoring

The SAT is scored by converting your “raw score” for each part of the test to a “scaled score” out of 800. To get into one of the top 50 most selective schools, you will generally need to have a composite SAT score of at least 1200, preferably 1400 or more. Composite SAT scores of more than 1400 are in the top five percent of test takers.

The questions have equal weight, with a correct answer earning one raw point and each incorrect answer losing no points. Consequently, a student’s mathematically expected gain from guessing is zero. The final score is derived from the raw score and the precise conversion chart varies from test to test. 

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