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The SAT (Scholastic Assessment Test)

The SAT (Scholastic Assessment Test) is a standardized test that helps the Ability to study of bachelor applicants at US universities and collegesmeasure up leaves.

The SAT has existed for over 100 years. The abbreviation SAT originally stood for Scholastic Achievement Test and later for Scholastic Assessment Test. For a few years now, the short form has established itself in everyday language.

The nonprofit organization College boardhas been running the SAT since its inception by. The board of examiners now serves more than 6,000 US universities and other educational institutions.

Target group of the SAT

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There are different forms of SAT: the general test and subject tests.

The SAT is almost always mandatory for local bachelor applicants. However, the ACT is also often accepted. Basically, the following guidelines apply:

  • International applicants for bachelor's programs in the USA you must have the Do not forcefully take off the SAT. It is therefore advisable to carefully check the application requirements of the university of your choice.
  • If the university requests the SAT from international applicants, this includes applicants from the German-speaking area. Good grades in the Abitur or the Matura cannot replace the SAT.
  • Students who are already enrolled as Transfer student If you want to move to a higher semester of a bachelor's program at a US university, you usually do not have to take the SAT.

SAT and SAT Subject Tests

The Scholastic Assessment Test examine the three areas mathematics (Mathematics), critical reading (Critical Reading) and creative writing (Writing). In addition to this general SAT exam, there are also the so-called SAT Subject Tests with more subject-specific examination modules. These supplement the general part and are also mandatory at some US universities.

The SAT Subject Tests can be taken in up to three examination modules. There are 20 examination modules from five subject areas (English, history, languages, math and science) to choose from.

Before you start preparing for the SAT, you should clarify whether the general SAT at the university of your choice is sufficient or whether additional ones SAT Subject Tests are necessary.

Exam content and test structure of the SAT (Scholastic Assessment Test)

The general SAT lasts 3 hours and 45 minutes, whereas the SAT Subject Tests take an hour.

Outline of the general SAT

The time required for the general SAT is divided into three areas as follows:

  • The section on the Critical Reading takes up 70 minutes. Here you have to answer multiple-choice questions on given text passages and complete sentences.
  • For testing in the field Mathematics 70 minutes are also available. There are mostly multiple choice questions as well as some tasks without predefined answer options.
  • The exam section for Writing is set to last 60 minutes. Here you have to write an essay, correct mistakes in given sentences and improve sentences in the context of the entire paragraph or text.

SAT Subject Tests

The SAT Subject Tests include Multiple choice questions on the respective subject area.

Special features apply to some modules: The language modules, for example, have a part of the examination on listening comprehension. A CD player with earplugs is required for this. A pocket calculator (if possible graphical) must be brought along with the math modules. The test participants will of course receive all the information they need to bring along in advance.

Rating system of the SAT

Each of the three areas of the general SAT is rated with 200 (low) to 800 (high) points. The maximum number of points results from the sum of the individual points.

In the area of ​​the Writing come two sub-numbers (Subscores): There are 20 to 80 points for the multiple choice part and 2 to 12 for the essay.

Both SAT Subject Tests the rating scale also ranges from 200 to 800 points.

Test takers have the possibility, the SAT and the SAT Subject Teststo repeatto improve the number of points achieved.

Preparation for the Scholastic Assessment Test

Since the result of the Scholastic Assessment Test has a major impact on the chances of admission to the university of their choice, many American students start preparing at an early age. Often this happens as part of private preparatory courses.

In many cases, the high school assists students in the preparatory phase. Since they work specifically towards the SAT for months, most students are well acquainted with the test structure and situation on the exam date.

For applicants from the German-speaking area, however, standardized tests such as the SAT are often "new territory". Therefore, it is especially important for them to be intensive and targeted on the test prepare.

College board offers various learning aids for this. On the official website of the SAT can be found free practice questions and a full SAT available for practice. There are also paid learning materials, for example a study guide on DVD or an online course.

Test centers and exam dates for the SAT

There are numerous test centers worldwidewho have the SAT and the SAT Subject Tests to offer.

  • Providers in Germany, Austria and Switzerland: mostly International schools
  • Exam dates: six appointments a year; one appointment in January, May, June, October, November and December
  • Combination of SAT and SAT Subject Tests: up to three SAT Subject Tests possible in addition to the general SAT on an exam date

Which test centers offer the desired exam date can be found on the official SAT website of College board visible. Students can register online up to about four weeks before the desired date for the SAT Sign in.

Costs and payment options

The SAT (Scholastic Assessment Test) generally costs US $ 51. For Exams outside of the United States become additional fees due. In Germany, Austria and Switzerland these are currently US $ 35.

For SAT Subject Tests A registration fee of US $ 24.50 will be charged for each SAT Subject Test-Module US $ 13. A language module with a listening comprehension section costs US $ 24. The additional fees for exams outside the USA of US $ 35 also apply here.

The total price is US $ 86 for the SAT and US $ 72.50 to US $ 83.50 for one SAT Subject Test. For everyone else Subject test US $ 13 or US $ 24 are added.

The payment the fees is currently by credit card, PayPal, check (only via an account with a US bank) or bank draft possible.

Official website for the SAT:

Preparation courses for the SAT

Book tips for the SAT