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The SAT is a standardized aptitude examination required by most of the colleges and universities as part of their admission process. The student’s score in the exam determines or predicts of how a student is likely to perform in college studies. It is your SAT scores as well as school grades, recommendations and other required information that is useful in offering places to students in undergraduate courses.
SAT has a prevalent history dated to 1990’s as the examination was initially developed by the Education Testing Service (ETS) who still administer the exam but currently the same is owned and developed by the College Board.
SAT Subject Tests are a suite of tools designed to assess your academic readiness for college. These exams provide a path to opportunities, financial support and scholarships, in a way that's fair to all students. The SAT and SAT Subject Tests keep pace with what colleges are looking for today, measuring the skills required for success in the 21st century.
In its present form it consists of two different examinations:
• The SAT Reasoning Test (formerly SAT I)
• The SAT Subject Tests (formerly SAT II)
The SAT Reasoning Test is usually longer (three hours and forty-five minutes) and has three main divisions:
- Can be in reach of a 10th grade student
- Questions are of two types:
1. Problem Solving- multiple choices (5 answers choices)
2. Student produced response questions (grid-ins)
The three sections in Math are organized as follows:
• One section of 25 minutes containing 8 problem solving questions and 10 grid-ins
• One section of 25 minutes containing 20 problem solving questions
• One section of 20 minutes containing 16 problem solving questions
There are a total of 54 scored math questions on one test. [Remember that each actual SAT test contains one experimental section of 25 minutes; this section could be math, writing or critical reading. Experimental sections will not be scored as they are used for research purposes.
Math questions on the SAT will be of different difficulty levels. Each section will start out with the preliminary level, move to medium level and end with difficult questions.
In any of the question types you may be tested on basic arithmetic, algebra, geometry and a few miscellaneous topics (mainly data interpretation and applied math).
The Grid- in questions (student produced response questions) are problems with no answer choices. The student needs to solve the problem and then enter the answer in a grid.
Each test has ten questions and ideally takes 12 minutes.
In our tests we allow you to enter up to four digits. You can use any digit from 0 to 9 and you can use a decimal point or a slash (/).
On the pencil and paper SAT tests the grid has four spaces also. You can try out the grids provided in the Official SAT Study Guide, or in the free Sample Test Booklet available from ETS.
The critical reading sections on SAT are designed to test your ability to read and understand written English of the level you need to make the most of a university course.
There are two types of questions:
1) Sentence Completion:
Sentence completion questions account for about one quarter of the marks for the critical reading section of SAT I. Each question contains one or two blanks, and you have to find the best answer choice to make the sentence make complete sense. Be sure to study the sentence carefully so that you notice all the clues built into the sentence. On the actual test the sentence completion questions will be graded from easy to hard. On average you will need a little less than one minute to answer each question. Our mini tests have 12 questions to be answered in 10 minutes. After each test review your wrong answers to see whether you missed any clues, and make a note of all the words you are not sure of.
2) Reading Comprehension:
Reading Comprehension (also known as Critical Reading) tests your ability to understand a passage and answer questions on the basis of what is stated as a summary in the passage. You need to read the passage first so that you can identify the main idea in the passage and appreciate features such as the author's tone and attitude as well as the organization of the passage. Scroll back to the relevant point in the text as you do each question.
Passages on the SAT vary in length from short paragraphs that take 3 minutes to read and answer two questions, to the ones that take 15 minutes to read and answer 13 questions. One section will contain two related long passages. Mini tests 11 - 14 contain one paragraph reading comprehensions. Be sure to read the directions and the time allowed at the beginning of each of our mini tests.
There is no shortcut to improving your critical reading ability. Practice does help - but if you are making too many errors choose some good books, newspaper articles, or good novels and choose passages and start analyzing them in the same format.
These questions require a level of vocabulary if you have been in the habit of reading good books throughout your high school career. However, if you are not a good reader, or if English is your second language, you will have to work hard to raise your vocabulary to the required level. You can start reading newspapers, read vocabulary builders online, practice English grammar tests for different levels and ensure to keep a dictionary in order to memorize complex words you encounter during the activities.
The SAT tests your writing skills in two ways:
1. SAT Essay - one essay to be written in 25 minutes.
2. SAT Grammar- 49 grammar questions as it accounts for over two thirds of the marks in this section, there are two sections, one of 25 minutes and one of 10 minutes.
The grammar questions are of three types:
1. Identification of sentence errors
2. Sentence correction
3. Editing in context
There are 10 sections in all three for each division, and one equating section. The equating section is used to assess questions for use in future tests. (It can be in any of the three areas and does not count toward the score).
Apart from a short essay and ten out of the 54 math questions, the questions are all five-answer multiple-choice. Each of the divisions has a maximum score of 800, giving a maximum overall score of 2400.
The SAT Subject Tests are a series of one-hour multiple-choice tests in subjects including
• Literature,
• History
• Physics
• Chemistry
• Biology
• Mathematics
• and a number of languages
(These tests used to be called SAT II, and even earlier they were called Achievement tests).
Who should take the SAT subject tests?
Not all colleges require students to sit for these tests and of those that do some require students to take two subjects and some require three. Some courses have specific requirements (for example, students might be asked for Mathematics Level 2 and Physics if they are applying for Engineering). Always check the specific requirements from the college website. A student can sit for up to three subject tests on the same day. It is not possible to sit for the SAT Reasoning Test and SAT Subject Tests on the same day. In many ways these tests are more straightforward than the Reasoning Test: they are based directly on the high school curriculum and the questions are not tricky

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