The SAT and the New SAT



The SAT Test in a Nutshell: What You Need to Know

The SAT is a standardized entrance exam that is used by colleges and universities in the United States and many other countries across the world to make admissions decisions. The SAT consists of multiple-choice questions and a few submit a response question in the pencil-and-paper format. It is created and
administered by the College Board.

The SAT plays a crucial role in measuring a high school student’s college readiness. It offers colleges a singular data point to make critical admission decisions among all their applicants. The SAT is taken into consideration along with the high school grades, Advanced Placement exams, extracurricular activities, personal essays, letter of recommendation from teachers, and admission interviews. While the SAT is now optional in most schools, getting a high score can help you balance out your profile and showcase your potential to perform well in an undergraduate study thereby increasing your chances of admission.


Why SAT Exam?

According to the College Board, ‘more than 2.2 million students in 175 countries and territories take the SAT exam every year’.

Most colleges in the USA require an undergrad applicant to submit either the SAT score or the ACT score. In many other countries, several colleges either accept or require SAT scores for undergraduate admissions. While admissions committees do consider other factors: including grades, transcripts, essays, extra-curricular activities, and contribution to the community, the SAT score is a critical criterion to get into a competitive undergrad school.

SAT is conducted 5 times a year in India. The test is generally administered in the months of March, May, August, October, and December.

Find out more about the SAT Exam Dates 2022


When is the SAT?

The SAT is conducted in the months of March, May, August, October, and December. The new Digital SAT would open up two more dates for the international students. Students can appear for the tests in any of these months and they can appear for the tests as many times as it occurs in a year which is
currently five and with the Digital SAT change will be seven.


Should I Take the ACT or the SAT?

Students all over the world take the SAT or the ACT depending on what they find as the right fit for them. Both the tests are competitive with respect to the ease with which students can prepare for them and it is possible to prepare for both the tests in a given time period. However, if a student wants to pick one, then the best way to make a decision is by taking a timed full-length practice test of each type. Various factors like the time pressure and the types of questions that are the most challenging can help a student determine the best fit.


What SAT Score Do I Need to Get Into My School of Choice?

Though there are no typical standards for a “good” SAT score, it is best for a student to aim for 1200 and above. Getting a high SAT score of more than 1500 improves the chances of an acceptance into the school of the student’s choice!

While the top universities definitely look at a score of 1500 and above as competitive, different universities have varying expectations when it comes to the SAT scores. The best way to determine this is to narrow down on the universities that you most wish to attend and determine what scores they are looking for.


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The New SAT Exam

In 2016 we got big changes in the exam. The content and the test structure of the New SAT exam are very different from those for the SAT administered until January 2016. So at least for a while, we can expect everybody to call the test the ‘New SAT’.

A quick overview of the New SAT exam structure:

Section Test Duration Number of Question
Evidence-based Reading and Writing Reading 65 Minutes 52
Evidence-based Reading and Writing Writing and Language 35 Minutes 44
Math Math Calculator not allowed 25 Minutes 20
Math Math Calculator allowed 55 Minutes 38
Total 230 Minutes 154
Essay The essay is no longer tested on the SAT.


Taking the New SAT Exam 

In India, the New SAT exam will be offered 5 times a year in the following months, March, May, August, October and December.  You can take either the SAT exam or 3 SAT Subject tests in one test administration.

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Why is the SAT being changed?

With the new Digital SAT, the College Board aims to bring changes to the test experience that will make the test more student-friendly and secure while still keeping it relevant.

According to the College Board, in the new test optional world, they want to make the SAT Exam the best available option for the students. The SAT Suite of Assessments offers many features through which students can access information about colleges, educational prospects, and scholarship opportunities.


Which colleges require the SAT?

While most of the universities in the US have become test optional, a good SAT score has been shown to correlate with higher acceptance rates at many of the top universities. Moreover, many of the schools in the USA still use the test scores to decide scholarships and admissions in an honors college. And some
research universities like MIT still need the students to submit the SAT/ACT scores.


Big Changes in SAT Exam

The College Board announced one of the biggest changes to the SAT Exam in 35 years in January 2022: “The SAT is going Digital”.

This means that the students will no longer be bubbling their answers with a pencil on their answer sheet but be taking the tests on a laptop or a tablet. However, this is not an at home exam and would still be conducted in a testing center with a test proctor.

Also, the test will move from a three-hour long test to a shorter two-hour test with fewer questions than the paper and pencil test increasing the average time the students can spend on an individual question.

Most importantly, the test is now becoming computer adaptive! The adaptiveness is from section to section meaning if a student performs well in the first section, then the second section will be harder but if a student performs poorly in the first section, then the second section will be easier.


Educational Eligibility Criteria

A valid Passport or Aadhar card is required for SAT eligibility. It should include a photograph, name, and signature. Any document that is ripped, worn, scuffed, or otherwise damaged will be rejected.


SAT Exam Syllabus

The SAT syllabus evaluates a candidate’s ability on a variety of fronts. It primarily focuses on knowledge or skills acquired at the school level.

Sections Syllabus
Reading 1. Classic or contemporary work [US/World Literature].

2. Social Science/Economics/Psychology/Sociology Passage.

3. Passages Based on BiPC [Biology, Physics, Chemistry] or Earth Science Subjects

4. Passages based on Global Conversations/US Founding Documents

Maths Algebra, Data Analysis and Problem Solving, Advanced Math [Quadratic Equations, Rational Exponents and Radicals, and so on], Other Subjects
Writing and Language Candidates must read and edit passages from the Humanities, Social Sciences, Commerce, and Science disciplines.


SAT Exam Dates 2022-23

There are only a few SAT exam dates left this year. Because most grad schools waive SAT requirements, the situation is precarious. It should be noted that while most foreign universities have made the SAT exam optional, the SAT scores will be considered if submitted.

Anticipated SAT Test Dates 2022 – 23:

GMAT Test Dates
October 1, 2022
December 3, 2022
March 11, 2023
May 6, 2023
June 3, 2023


SAT Scholarship

The College Board India Scholars Program, focuses on providing SAT scholarships to Indian students from low-income families who have a strong academic record. SAT scholarship for Indian students provides a full scholarship to students who scored 1300 on the SAT and whose income does not meet a certain threshold. When applying for admission, students can apply for scholarships.

Collegeboard has established the India Global Alliance in collaboration with Indian universities. Through the SAT scholarship, candidates can study at some of the best international universities in the world, including Cambridge, MIT, Columbia, and others.


Universities Accepting SAT Score in India

Nearly 35 universities in India accept the SAT scores. Some universities accept it only for selective courses while others accept it for all of their courses. The courses could range from engineering to arts and these universities expect a score of 1350 and above from the students applying with the SAT.


Universities that Accept SAT Score for all of their Degree Courses

  • Ashoka University
  • Azim Premji University
  • FLAME University
  • Jagdish Sheth School of Management
  • KREA University
  • Manav Rachna International Institute of Research and Studies
  • Plaksha University
  • Shiv Nadar University
  • Sri Sri University
  • Srishti School of Art Design and Technology
  • SRM Institute of Science and Technology
  • SRM University, AP – Amaravati
  • SRM University Delhi-NCR, Sonepat
  • Symbiosis Skills and Professional University
  • World University of Design


Universities that Accept the SAT Score for Selective Programs

University Programs That Accept SAT Scores
Ahmedabad University All except B.Tech.
Bennett University B.Tech.
BML Munjal University B.Tech.
B.Sc. (Economics)
Gandhi Institute of Technology and Management (GITAM) All B.Sc./B.C.A./B.E.M. programs
All B.B.A. programs
B.Com. (Honours)
All BA programs
M.S. Ramaiah University of Applied Sciences B.Tech.
Pharma D.
B. Des.
B.Sc. (Honours)
B.Com. (Honours)
B.Sc. (Bio-Tech)
B.Sc. (Food Processing and Technology)
B.Sc. (Dialysis Therapy Technology)
B.Sc. (Medical Radiology and Imaging Technology)
B.Sc. (Cardiac Care Technology)
B.Sc. (Sports and Exercise Science)
B.Sc. (Optometry)
B.Sc. (Operation Theatre Technology)
Manipal Academy of Higher Education B.Sc. (Exercise and Sports Sciences)
B.Sc. (Health Information Management)
B.Sc. (Medical Imaging Technology)
B.Sc. (Perfusion Technology)
B.Sc. (Renal Replacement Therapy & Dialysis Technology)
B.Com. (Professional)
B.Com. (Business Process Services)
OP Jindal Global University All programs except Law
SVKM’s NMIMS All courses in the following streams (schools):
EngineeringLiberal ArtsMathsEconomicsCommerce
Symbiosis International (Deemed University) Liberal Arts
Vellore Institute of Technology All except Engineering, Law, and Architecture programs


Number of Attempts for the SAT Exams

The College Board places no restriction on the number of times that a student can take the SAT exam. This means that the student can take the exam as many times as they want in their lifetime. However, the test is administered 5 times in India at the moment which will go up to 7 times a year with the Digital SAT. Hence, the student will be able to take the test only these many times in a year.


How to Cancel SAT Score?

If candidates are dissatisfied with their SAT results, they can cancel them. However, once they have requested cancellation, it cannot be reinstated or reported. You can cancel your SAT scores in two ways:


Option 1: SAT Test Center

After you’ve completed the test, ask for a request to cancel the test scores form.’
Before leaving, fill out the form and give it to the test coordinator.


Option 2: After leaving the SAT Test Center

The signed, written score cancellation form must be submitted by 11.59 p.m. ET on the Thursday following the test date. The form must be downloaded, completed, and faxed to the address.


SAT Exam Registration

How to Reschedule the SAT Exam?

To reschedule your SAT EXAM, students need to first cancel their existing test registration and then register for a new one. A fee of $25 is charged for canceling the registration by the deadline for change.


SAT Photo Requirements

As a part of the SAT Registration, the students are required to upload a photo onto the online application. This photo is used by the test center staff to verify a student’s identity against the photo ID carried by the student on the test date to ensure security.

If the uploaded photo does not match the one on the ID brought by the student on the test date, the student will not be allowed to take the exam. This means that the photo uploaded by the student should satisfy all the criteria mentioned at the time of uploading. That is, only the student must be in the picture, it should be a clearly visible, head and shoulders view, and the student must be completely in
focus without any dark spots or shadows. A black and white photo is also acceptable.

Even if the photo is uploaded successfully, it does not mean that the student has uploaded the right kind of photo. It just means that the photo meets the file type and size requirements. According to the file requirements, the photos can be in .jpg, .gif, or .png file formats.


SAT Payment Methods

The College Board allows payment through one of the following methods: International Credit card: American Express, Discover, Visa, MasterCard, Diners Club, and JCB.
PayPal: If the students do not have a PayPal account, it can be created before registration.


SAT Test Day Checklist​

The most important thing for you to carry on the test date is the valid ID Proof (original aadhar card or passport) to validate the student’s identity and the printed up-to-date Admission Ticket. The test staff check the name on the admissions ticket against the one on the ID.

Besides this the students are advised to bring a

● Face covering
● Two No. 2 pencils with erasers
● An approved calculator
● Epinephrine auto-injectors (like EpiPens) ( in a clear bag under the student’s desk during testing).


How to Send SAT Scores?

When a student registers to take the SAT, he or she can send four score reports free of charge. The score recipients can be designated at the time of registration or until nine days after the student takes the exam.

After this period, to send the SAT to score to a university, the student has to pay a fee of $12. To do so, the student has to sign in to the College Board account and select the colleges to send the scores to on the Send SAT Scores page. After searching for the universities by name or code and adding them to the recipient list, the student can make the payment and the College Board will initiate the score sending process.


How is the SAT is Scored?

The super score for the SAT is 1600. It has two sections : the Evidence-Based Reading and writing and the Math Section, each of which is scored out of 800.

Each section is a combination of four test scores each of which is a number between 10 and 40. The test scores are formed from the seven sub scores on the SAT each of which have a possible score in a range of 1–15.

Another breakdown of the scores is the cross test scores. Analysis in History/Social Studies and Analysis in Science are the two cross test scores with raw scores falling in the range of 1 to 35.


SAT Exam Preparation

The SAT exam is divided into three sections: reading, mathematics, and writing, as well as an optional essay section. It is critical to target each section individually in order to achieve a higher score.

  • Make a strategy for each SAT section
  • Begin with the simpler questions
  • Before the exam, take as many SAT practice tests as you can
  • Recognize your flaws and work to improve them
  • First, eliminate incorrect answers
  • SAT reading passages should be read with interest and then answered
  • Before answering, highlight the important parts of the question
  • In SAT writing, use the assess and analyze functions
  • Later, answer the difficult questions
  • After finishing the section, fill in the bubbles on the sheet and mark the answers booklet first
  • Memorize important information for the SAT section
  • Try coming up with your own SAT Reading answers and then cross-checking them
  • Learn the fundamentals of grammar
  • If questions are taking too long, skip them
  • Most importantly, remain calm throughout and double-check your answers


SAT Practice Papers

The SAT Mock exams will provide you with a thorough examination experience and will help you prepare for the actual SAT exam. The more you practice your SAT Mock exams, the more likely you are to achieve a high score on your SAT exam. Get to know more about the SAT Practice Test.

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What is SAT eligibility?

There are no SAT Exam eligibility criteria set by The College Board for taking the SAT exam. However, SAT is for admission to undergraduate programs, candidates need to appear for their SAT while in standard 10th, 11th or 12th.There is no minimum or maximum age limit for candidates wanting to register for the test.

Is the SAT very difficult?

This differs from student to student. The SAT measures the reading skills, Grammar knowledge, and mathematical skills at the high school level only. But the Test is more testing your swiftness in answering questions accurately. So, the test needs preparation.

What type of questions are asked in the SAT exam?

The questions asked are multiple-choice questions.

In the SAT Verbal section, the questions are evidence-based and questions are asked based on passages. The Comprehension skills, interpretational skills, grammar knowledge, and analytical skills are put to test through questions.

SAT Math on the other hand needs the basic formulae in Algebra, Geometry, and Arithmetic to be thorough. Some questions need the reasoning skills too.

How to Prepare for the SAT?

The best way to prepare for the SAT exam is to start with taking a mock test and find out what’s in the test and where you stand. Thereafter, depending on the University you aspire to, you need to join an SAT course to understand the tricks and traits of the SAT.

How many times am I allowed to take the SAT?

You can take the SAT any number of times. But that doesn’t mean you do. What’s advisable is to take the SAT to a maximum of three times.

What are the major changes to the 2021 SAT?

There is no big change in the test format or way questions are asked. All 4 sections such as the SAT Reading section, SAT Writing section, SAT Math-Calculator section and SAT Math-no calculator sections remain. Only the SAT Essay has been discontinued.

Do colleges see all my SAT scores?

You are allowed to send your SAT scores to 4 colleges after your test. So, if you do avail that, those colleges will be able to see your scores. The good news is that College Board has an option called Score Choice, which allows students to only send scores that best reflect their ability. The bad news is that not all colleges participate in the Score Choice option.

What’s the best way to study for the SAT?

  • It is recommended that you join a course for the SAT.
  • Start with taking a practice test. 
  • Learn the test strategies and techniques during your course.
  • Know your strengths and weaknesses.
  • Keep practicing with the tests.
  • Analyze and review your tests to understand how and where you make mistakes.
  • Work on them. Again take practice tests.
  • Keep achieving small targets and then meet your dream score.

Who takes the SAT?

The SAT is taken by students attending their high school in the 11th or 12th standard who want to pursue an undergraduate study in the US or some other international countries. The SAT is a standardized test that would give these students a competitive edge along with their academic grade and profile while applying to the US universities.

Do high SAT scores predict better performance in college?

According to the National SAT Validity Study released by the College Board, the SAT strongly predicts college success. That is, those students who have higher SAT scores have a greater likelihood of having higher grades in college. Thus most of the universities consider SAT in conjunction with a student’s grades to predict his or her future academic performance.

How to Cancel the SAT Exam?

To cancel an SAT Exam, you need to first Sign in to your My SAT account and then select the registration you wish to cancel. You can click the Cancel Registration from the ‘I would like to menu’ to cancel the registration.

How Important Is the SAT?

The SAT plays an important role in the college admissions process. They show the colleges your “college readiness”. Since the SAT has a strong predictive influence on a student’s future academic performance and universities use it as an indicator of your college success, getting a good SAT score improves your acceptance rate in a university.

Also, the SATs level the playing field since different high schools have different grading systems and some schools may grade more stringently than the others. SAT gives all the students an equal chance to showcase their ability on a common standardized platform.

Is the SAT Hard?

Well, It’s probably going to seem hard the first time you sit down to take it. But the more you study, the easier it gets. Knowing the format, pattern of the exam, and some strategies to deal with its favorite types of questions, can help you get on your way to your dream college and improve your score. The SAT is, in fact, a very learnable test.

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