SAT Exam

SAT Exam

For every high school student, who wants to study in the USA, the SAT exam is the first step towards fulfilling their dreams! Scholastic Assessment Test or SAT, which is conducted by the College Board, is one of the most popular exams to study abroad. It measures a student’s eagerness and academic inquisitiveness and helps colleges in comparing the applicants for a particular course. Along with the SAT scores, your high school GPA, subjects, extra-curricular activities, personal essays and letters of recommendation [LOR] are also assessed. In this blog, we will explore why the SAT exam is important, what subjects it consists of as well as major tips that can help you crack SAT with good scores. 

SAT Exam: COVID-19 Updates

Due to the outbreak of Corona Pandemic and keeping in mind the prevalent conditions, College Board has CANCELLED the exams which were scheduled to be held on 28th MARCH, 2nd MAY, and 6th JUNE 2020. However, those who have registered for the June exam/are in the 2021 batch without SAT scores, College Board will allow them early access to register for Aug, Sept, October administrations.

Main Highlights

Before we delve deep into the details pertaining to this exam, let us go through the key highlights of the SAT exam.

Exam Name Scholastic Aptitude Test
SAT Exam Eligibility No specific eligibility or age limits. One should
Conducting Body College Board
Exam Mode Offline
SAT Exam Registration Online and Mail
SAT Exam Fee $49.5 + Regional Fee for India [$49]
Fee with Essay $64.50 + Regional Fee for India [$49]
SAT Subject Test Fee $26 Registration Charges + $22 For Every Subject + Regional Fee for India [$49]
Score Scale 400-1600

Types of SAT Exams

There are majorly two types of SAT exams, SAT General and SAT Subject Test. While the former examines a candidate’s Reading, Writing, and Mathematical skills, the latter assesses a candidate’s command over a particular subject. The prospective student can choose one from a range of 20 subjects. The major differences have been given a rundown below.

Details SAT General SAT Subject Test
Duration 3 Hours + 50 Minutes for Essay [Optional] 1 Hour
Sections Reading, Maths, and Writing 1 Subject
Frequency 7 times a year 6 times a year [However, not all subjects are offered on every date available]
Negative Marking NA A fraction of a point
Score Scale 400-1600 200-800

Why Should You Give the SAT Exam? 

While there are numerous exams to study abroad, the SAT is beneficial in many ways. Here we have listed the major reasons why you should appear for the SAT exam:

  • Opens a gateway to pursue undergradute programs in American and Candian Universities.
  • You can apply for a scholarship through your SAT score. This helps you explore different options for paying your college tuition fee. 
  • Furthermore, there are certain job opportunities that also take the SAT scores into consideration.


Although both SAT and ACT are for those who want to pursue higher education from USA, there are some features which are uncommon. Here are the major differences between SAT and ACT:

Details SAT ACT
Sections Reading, Maths, Writing and Language Test Reading, Science, Maths, and English Test
Exam Duration 3 Hours + 50 MInutes [Optional Essay] 2 Hours and 55 Minutes + 40 Minutes [Optional Essay]
Total Questions  154 215
Number of Score Reports Unlimited Only 20
Score Scale 400-1600 1-36
Registration Deadlines  4 weeks before the test 5 weeks before the test
Free Mock Tests 8 downloadable, with scoring Only 1

SAT Exam Pattern

The duration of the paper is 3 hours and the exam tests your writing, mathematical, and reading abilities. Each section in the SAT has a score range of 200-800 points. The final score consists of scores from all sections that may vary from 400 to 1600. However, the writing section is marked on a range of 0-24 and may vary incrementally. Here is a table that outlines the necessary information about the different sections of the SAT exam:

Section Duration  Questions
Reading 65 minutes 52
Writing 35 minutes  44
Maths  80 minutes  58
Essay (optional) 50 minutes 


SAT Syllabus

The SAT syllabus assesses a candidate’s ability on various fronts. It primarily focuses on knowledge or skills which you have garnered at the school level.

Sections Syllabus
Reading 1. Classic or Contemporary work [US/World Literature]
2. Passage on Social Science/Economics/Psychology/Sociology
3. Passages Based on BiPC Subjects[Biology, Physics, Chemistry] or Earth Science
4. Global Conversations/US Founding Documents based passages
Maths Algebra, Data Analysis and Problem Solving, Advanced Maths [Quadratic Equations, Rational Exponents and Radicals, etc.], Other Topics.
Writing and Language The candidates have to read and edit the passages which are generally Humanities, Social Science, Commerce, and Science-based. 
SAT Essay In this, candidates will have to read a passage, examine how the author builds an argument, and write an essay on the same. 

Registration Process

You can register for the SAT exam either online or by mail. For online process, you have to make an account on College Board website and fill all the requisite personal and academic details. On the other hand, only those who fulfill the following criteria are can apply through mail:

  • If you are selecting a Sunday exam date for the first time and will be making the payment through check/money order.
  • 16 years or below.
  • Facing issues in uploading photo through the online route
  • Registering through a representative.

The SAT exam is held from October to January internationally mainly on Saturdays. It is highly recommended to secure your SAT exam dates early in order to avoid any hassles at the last minute.

How to Prepare for the SAT?

For attaining good scores in the SAT exam, you should prepare in advance along with keeping the following tips in mind: 

  • Begin by answering the questions you know. Attempting to answer questions that you are not familiar with may result in a loss of time.
  • Read the section-wise directions thoroughly before attempting a specific section. 
  • Since there is no negative marking in the SAT exam, try not to leave out questions and answer even the difficult ones with the best possible guess.
  • Read each and every part questions carefully. Being confident is good but being overconfident may result in silly mistakes that can easily be avoided. 


Do universities in India accept SAT scores?

Yes, many Indian universities accept SAT scores for admissions. Some of them are SVKM’s NMIMS, Ahemdabad University, Azim Premji University, FLAME University, Indian School of Business and Finance, BML Munjal University, Manav Rachna, Srishti School of Art Design and Technology, etc.

Which Indian Universities accept SAT Subject Test scores?

Some of the leading Indian institutes accepting SAT Subject scores are Delhi Technological University, IIIT Allahabad, IIIT Delhi, Indian Maritime University, NIT Karnataka, NIT Delhi, NIT Goa, S P Jain School of Global Management, etc.

Can I get Scholarships through SAT scores?

Yes, but only if you secure a minimum score as prescribed by the organisation or institute offering the SAT scholarships.

What is the validity of SAT score?

SAT scores are valid for 5 years.

To how many universities can you send your SAT scores?

You can send your SAT scores to 4 universities for free every time you register for SAT. However, if you want to send scores after they are released, you’ll have to pay a fee. This is not for those who are eligible for a SAT fee waiver scheme.

These tips will help you get a good score on the SAT exam thus landing you into your dream college. If you are confused about how to tackle the exam, then don’t worry! Enroll in Leverage Edu‘s Online Classes where you’ll get to study from domain-experts, practice innumerable mock tests, and get your doubts cleared through one-on-one sessions!

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