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# SAT – How is the Test Scored?

The SAT is scored on a scale of 400 to 1600, with separate scores for the Math and Evidence-Based Reading and Writing sections. The optional essay is scored separately on a scale of 2 to 8.

Each section of the SAT is scored based on the number of questions a student answered correctly, with no penalty for incorrect answers or skipping a question. Students receive 1 point for each correct answer. This raw score is then converted to a scaled score (between 200 – 800) using a formula that takes into account the difficulty of the questions on the test.

The scaled scores for the two sections are added together to produce a composite score, which is the student’s overall SAT score. The maximum composite score is 1600, with 800 points possible for each section.

In addition to the overall SAT score, students also receive subscores and cross-test scores that provide more detailed information about their performance. Subscores indicate a student’s performance in specific areas within each section, such as “Words in Context” in the Reading section or “Heart of Algebra” in the Math section. Cross-test scores indicate a student’s ability to apply knowledge and skills across different subject areas, such as “Analysis in Science” or “Command of Evidence”.

The SAT score report also includes percentiles, which indicate the percentage of students who scored lower than the student on the test. For example, a percentile of 75 means that the student scored higher than 75% of test-takers.

## What is a good score on the SAT?

A good score on the SAT test will vary depending on the scores colleges or universities you are applying to are looking for. In general, a score of 1200 or above (out of 1600) will put you in the top 75th percentile of test takers, which means you did better than 75% of the other test takers.

Here are some statistics that will give you a sense of the score you may want to aim for.

Score Needed to be in the top 10% of all SAT test takers:

EBRW – 670 – 800
Math – 690 – 800

Score Needed to be in the top 25% of all SAT test takers:

EBRW – 610 – 660
Math – 600 – 680

Score Needed to be in the top 50% of all SAT test takers:

EBRW – 540 – 600
Math – 530 – 590