The SAT exam is a standardised test that is required for undergraduate educational programs in the USA. The test assesses pupils’ overall preparation while also allowing for forecasts of college results. Writing & Language, Math, and Reading are the three mandatory portions of the SAT exam for Indian students and others. But starting this year, the optional Essay part will be removed. The composite SAT score is the sum of the results in the reading and writing (200-800) and maths (200-800) components (200-800). The test takes three hours to complete in total. The College Board used to administer two forms of the SAT exam, the General Test and the Subject Test, in the United States and other worldwide locations until roughly a year ago.

The College Board has not created any specific eligibility requirements for students who wish to take this test. It should be emphasised, however, that there is no upper or lower age limit for taking this exam. According to studies, students between the ages of 17 and 19 are among the most test-takers. Students have the option of taking the exam multiple times. It is conducted roughly five times a year in India –  March, August, May, December, and October. While there are no particular requirements, anyone interested in applying for a UG degree must have a high school diploma/certificate.

Let’s discuss the SAT Syllabus in detail:

For all overseas students, the SAT exam is set to go digital in 2023, but until then, the SAT – a paper-based standardised examination – will continue to be used as one of the entrance criteria for admission to universities in the United States. The latest exam pattern is as follows:

2022 Exam Pattern Components   No. of Questions Allotted Time (in minutes)
                    Reading                   52                       65
        Writing & Language                   44                       35
                      Maths                   58                       80
                    TOTAL                   154                     180


  • Reading

The Evidence-Based Reading and Writing section of the SAT includes this section. It has a total of 52 questions and 5 paragraphs. You have 65 minutes to read and comprehend these passages and answer the questions that follow. Each 500-750 word passage can be derived from one of the following sources:

  • Literature from the United States or throughout the world, classic or modern.
  • Document or speech about the US Constitution and its founding.
  • A collection of articles on economics, psychology, sociology, and other topics.

Following each passage, there are 10-11 MCQs. In general, the questions fall under the following categories:

  • The passage’s main topic or major theme.
  • A sentence in the passage is explained or inferred.
  • In the text, the function of a phrase or sentence.
  • The author’s voice, tone, perspective, or attitude.
  • Evidence that backs up a point of view.
  • Diagrams, charts, and graphs are used to analyse data.

Because the questions are always based on the reading, the exam does not hope for you to know the background story of the passage themes. However, exposure to these subjects is suggested since, first, it aids in the development of a reading habit, and second, it is a surefire confidence booster.

  • Writing and Language

The Evidence-Based Reading and Writing section of the SAT includes this section. It is made up of four passages and 44 multiple-choice questions. You have 35 minutes to read and comprehend these paragraphs, as well as answer the questions that follow. Every passage could come from an article or a piece of writing about:

  • Careers
  • History of Science or Social Studies
  • Humanities

The following are the types of questions that are frequently asked:

  • Textual, stylistic, or tonal word choices.
  • Changes to the structure to ensure the accuracy or increase readability.
  • Sentence structure, punctuation, and grammar usage that includes verb tense, parallel construction, and subject-verb agreement, among other things.

Because all of the questions are within the scope of the passage, no prior knowledge of the topics is required. Some texts may include graphs or charts to test your ability to interpret them (not mathematical skills). The above sections are graded on a range of 200 to 800 points.

  • Maths

The SAT Maths section is divided into two sections: Maths Test-Calculator and Maths Test-No Calculator. Maths Test-Calculator requires you to answer 38 questions in 55 minutes, whereas Maths Test-No Calculator requires you to answer 20 questions in 25 minutes. The calculator section of the test requires sophisticated calculations that require the use of a calculator; however, if you are not comfortable with using one, you can skip it.

The Maths exam is divided into three sections:

Heart of Algebra
Linear equations with rational coefficients, systems of linear equations, linear inequalities in two variables and their systems, and graphical representation of linear function are all examples of linear equations with rational coefficients.

Problem-Solving & Data Analysis
Percentages, ratios, and proportions; unit conversion; scatterplot equations; two-way tables for calculating conditional frequencies and conditional probabilities.  The prediction of a population statistic; the computation of mean, median, mode, range, and standard deviation in statistics; the examination of reports to ensure that data gathering methods are adequate.

Passport to Advanced Maths
Quadratic equations with rational coefficients; determining the most appropriate form of an expression; addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division of polynomial equations; polynomial zeros and factors; the non-linear relationship between two variables; function notation; exclusion of a variable by reorganisation of formula or equation.
The Maths section is scored on a scale of 200-800.

The average candidate allows themselves 6-12 weeks to prepare for the SAT. Additionally, SAT preparation time varies from person to person. We recommend that you browse over the SAT Syllabus and take an SAT practise exam to get an idea of how much time you’ll need to prepare for the SAT. Following are some tips to begin your preparation for the said exam:

  • Start Early – it also depends upon your individual preparation style.
  • Study from the official guide format and trusted resources.
  • Always take full-length practice tests to know where you lack.
  • Pay attention to your weaknesses and how you can improve.
  • Manage the time properly – every question matters.

Also read:

SATOne™ – Premium SAT Preparation

What is SAT, and how does one prepare for it? :: Study Abroad

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