About SAT - Winward Academy

SAT Prep

Length

3 hours (without writing)

3 hours 50 minutes (with writing)

When Offered

The SAT is offered seven times per year: August, October, November, December, March, May, and June.

Sections

The SAT exam has a Math score (calculated from a calculator section and non-calculator section) and an Evidence-Based Reading and Writing score (calculated from a reading section and grammar/ mechanics section). There is an optional essay section.

Cost

$47.50 (without writing)

$64.50 (with writing)

What is the SAT?

The SAT is a multiple-choice, pencil-and-paper exam administered by College Board seven times per year. It’s a college entrance exam used by most colleges and universities to inform admissions decisions and grant merit-based scholarships. Because your SAT score is a major factor in college admissions, it’s important to prep to achieve your best score.

Length

3 hours (without writing)

3 hours 50 minutes (with writing)

When Offered

The SAT is offered seven times per year: August, October, November, December, March, May, and June.

Sections

The SAT exam has a Math score (calculated from a calculator section and non-calculator section) and an Evidence-Based Reading and Writing score (calculated from a reading section and grammar/ mechanics section). There is an optional essay section.

Cost

$47.50 (without writing)

$64.50 (with writing)

What is the point of the SAT?

The purpose of the SAT is to measure a high school student’s college readiness and to give college admissions officers a common data point to compare applicants. Applicants submit standardized test scores (ACT or SAT) along with high school GPA, course list, extracurricular activities, personal essays, and letters of recommendation from teachers, counselors, or mentors. Overall, the higher your SAT score, the better your chances of admission and receiving financial support. Colleges use SAT scores for admissions and merit-based scholarships.

When should I take the SAT?

Most high school students take the ACT, SAT, or both during the spring of the junior year or the fall of their senior year. Examine your baseline score, estimate how much studying you need to do, and plan accordingly. Not everyone’s happy with his or her score the first time around. Plan ahead so you’ll have time to retake the exam if needed. View all upcoming SAT test dates.

How long is the SAT?

The SAT covers 154 questions in 3 hours. The breakdown of the sections is as follows: Reading 65 minutes, Writing and Language 35 minutes, Math (no calculator) 25 minutes, and Math (with calculator) 55 minutes. If you choose to take the optional Essay section, it is an additional 50 minutes.

What is tested on the SAT?

The SAT has two scores on a scale of 200 to 800: (1) Evidence-Based Reading and Writing and (2) Math. The Evidence-Based Reading and Writing score is generated by performance on a section testing reading comprehension and a section testing writing and language skills. The Math score is generated by performance on a calculator and non-calculator portion that is both multiple-choice and grid-in. The SAT also includes an optional 50-minute Writing section that some colleges require. Check with your college counselor or college websites for more information.

How is the SAT scored?

The SAT is scored on a 1600-point scale with an average score of 1060. You will receive a score for Evidence-Based Reading and Writing and a score for Math - each from 200 to 800 points. Your total SAT score is the sum of those two sections. If you take the optional essay, then you’ll receive a separate score for writing that does not affect your total SAT score. There’s no penalty for wrong answers, so be sure to guess if you’re not sure or run out of time.

How can I prep for the SAT?

It should come as no surprise that students who are well-prepared and confident perform much better on the SAT. It’s extremely important to master grammar and math foundation, reading comprehension skills, and expertise with interpreting figures, tables, and graphs are also beneficial (the SAT puts charts and graphs in all sections, whereas the ACT only puts them in the Science section). The right prep course can help you focus your energy and develop the skills you need to ace the SAT. But remember -- not all prep courses are created equal. At Winward Academy, our SAT prep solutions are tailor-made to give you as much -- or as little -- help as you need on the specific topics and concepts you're looking to master.

Should I take the ACT or SAT?

Most colleges and universities accept scores from both the ACT and SAT, and do not favor one test over the other. Due to changes made to the SAT in 2016, the two tests are now more similar in content and style. It’s easier for students to prep for both exams concurrently and earn competitive scores on both tests. Other students, however, show a strong preference for one test over the other. The best way to decide which test is better for you is to take a full-length practice test of each one and compare your scores. Pay attention to how you handle time pressure, whether you’re comfortable doing math without a calculator, and what questions you find challenging. Those factors can help you determine which test is a better fit. Try our ACT, SAT, or Both quiz to learn more about which test is better for you.

What is the PSAT?

The PSAT is a Preliminary SAT used to determine qualifications for National Merit Scholarships. The multiple-choice test is taken by over 3.4 million sophomores and juniors each October.

What are SAT Subject Tests?

The SAT Subject Tests are one-hour multiple-choice tests administered six times per year (the same days as the SAT except for March). If you’re applying to selective colleges, you’ll likely need at least two subject test scores. As you develop your college list, be sure to check subject test requirements. Note that you cannot take both the SAT and SAT Subject Tests on the same day.