The SAT (Scholastic Assessment Test) is a standardized test widely used for college admissions in the United States. The SAT is designed to measure a student’s knowledge and skills in reading, writing, and math. The test consists of multiple-choice questions and an optional essay section. The reading section measures the student’s ability to read and understand complex texts, while the writing and language section tests the student’s ability to edit and improve written passages. The math section covers a range of mathematical concepts, including algebra, geometry, and trigonometry.

Going forward the SAT will be online, and students are required to take the test online digitally. Only Students with approved accommodation can take Digital SAT on paper. SAT Paper Test is a non-adaptive test, meaning that all test-takers receive the same set of questions, regardless of their abilities or previous answers.

New SAT Linear (non-adaptive) test:

The total number of questions will be divided into 2 sets of questions called Modules. Each module’s time will be between 32 – 35 minutes.   If the students have requested special time accommodation, the time will differ.  This is how the structure of the New SAT Linear (non-adaptive) is designed.

Structure of the SAT Non-Adaptive Test

CategoryReading and Writing (RW) SectionMath Section
FormatReading and Writing section administered via two separately timed modules R/W Module 1 and R/W Module2Math section administered via two separately timed modules Math Module1 Math Module2
Test lengthRW Module 1: 33 Questions RW Module 2: 33 QuestionsMath Module 1: 27 Questions Math Module 2: 27 Questions
Time per stage1st module: 32 minutes 2nd module: 32 minutes1st module: 35 minutes 2nd module: 35 minutes
Question TypeMultiple-choiceMultiple-choice and Student Produced Responses.

Question Categories details of Test:

The questions in the Reading and Writing section fall into four content domains.  Information and Ideas, Crafts and Structure, Expression, and Standard English Conventions. The questions in the Math section also fall into four content Domains. Algebra, Advanced Math, Problem-solving and Data Analysis, and Geometry.

Reading/Writing Content Domain.

Content Domain SequenceDescriptionSkill/Knowledge Testing PointsOperational Question Distribution
Craft & StructureMeasures the comprehension, vocabulary, analysis, synthesis, and reasoning skills and knowledge needed to understand and use high-utility words and phrases in context, evaluate texts rhetorically, and make connections between topically related texts.Central Ideas and Details, Command of Evidence • Textual  • Quantitative Inferences?26% / 12–14 questions  
Information & IdeasMeasures comprehension, analysis, and reasoning skills and knowledge and the ability to locate, interpret, evaluate, and integrate information and ideas from texts and informational graphics (tables, bar graphs, and line graphs).•Words in Context •Text Structure and Purpose •Cross-Text Connections?28% / 13–15 questions  
Standard English ConventionsMeasures the ability to edit the text to conform to core conventions of Standard English sentence structure, usage, and punctuation.Rhetorical Synthesis Transitions? 20% / 8–12 questions  
Expression of IdeasMeasures the ability to revise texts to improve the effectiveness of written expression and to meet specific rhetorical goals.Boundaries Form, Structure, and Sense? 26% / 11–15 questions

Math Content Domain

Content Domain Sequence  DescriptionSkill/Knowledge Testing PointsOperational Question Distribution
AlgebraAlgebra measures the ability to analyze, fluently solve, and create linear equations and inequalities as well as analyze and fluently solve equations and systems of equations using multiple techniques.  Linear equations in 1 variable Linear equations in 2 variables Linear functions Systems of 2 linear equations in 2 variables Linear inequalities in 1 or 2 variables  ? 35%/ 13–15 questions  
Advanced MathThe Advanced Math area measures skills and knowledge central for progression to more advanced math courses, including demonstrating an understanding of absolute value, quadratic, exponential, polynomial, rational, radical, and other nonlinear equations.  Equivalent expressions Nonlinear equations in 1 variable System of equations in 2 variables Nonlinear functions  ? 35%/ 13–15 questions  
Problem Solving & Data AnalysisProblem-Solving and Data Analysis measures the ability to apply quantitative reasoning about ratios, rates, and proportional relationships; understand and apply unit rate; and analyze and interpret one- and two-variable data. This group of skills is about being quantitatively literate and demonstrating a command of math that resonates throughout college courses, career training programs, and everyday life.  Ratios, rates, proportional relationships, and units Percentages One-variable data: distributions and measures of center and spread Two-variable data: models and scatterplots Probability and conditional probability Inference from sample statistics and margin of error Evaluating statistical claims: observational studies and experiments?15%/ 5–7 questions  
Geometry & TrigonometryGeometric figures will be used to solve problems related to length, area, volume, and scale factors. Using vertical angles, triangles, and parallel lines cut by a transversal, determine congruence, similarity, and sufficiency. Solve problems using the Pythagorean theorem, right triangle, and unit circle trigonometry, special right triangle properties, and properties of circles.  Area and volume Lines, angles, and triangles Right triangles and trigonometry Circles  ?15%/ 5–7 questions  

Here is a table summarizing the scoring system of the SAT test:

SectionNumber of QuestionsScore RangeSubscoresCross-Test Scores
Math58200-800Heart of Algebra, Problem Solving and Data Analysis, Passport to Advanced MathNone
Evidence-Based Reading and Writing96200-800Expression of Ideas, Standard English Conventions, Words in ContextAnalysis in History/Social Studies, Analysis in Science, Command of Evidence
Essay (optional)12-8N/AN/A

The scoring system of the Linear SAT:

The total score on the SAT is the combined score of the two sections; Evidence-Based Reading and Writing, and Math. Since the changes on the SAT in 2016, the maximum total score of these two sections (which was previously 2400) has been brought down to 1600.

This is your ‘Main’ SAT score that the undergraduate institutions you apply to are concerned with.

Both the Evidence-Based Reading and Writing and Math sections account for 800 points each from the total score of 1600.

If you are planning to take the SAT linear (non-adaptive) test or if you want to explore the new SAT structure or question content you can take the practice test. Collegeboard has released the 4 Practice test. You can download these tests and take the timed test.

Students can take the paper test and grade the test online via the Socrato platform and get the detailed diagnostic report.

Socrato has done a complete analysis of the subject topics and difficulty levels of each test and created the diagnostic report.

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