The SAT Reasoning Test is a standardized test for college admissions to undergraduate courses in the United States. It gauges your critical thinking skills which you will need for academic success in college and it also assesses how well you analyze and solve problems.
The current SAT Reasoning Test is administered in about 3 hours and 45 minutes. The SAT scores have a validity of five years although most good colleges prefer recent scores that are not more than 2 years old.
SAT consists of three major sections: Mathematics, Critical Reading, and Writing. There is one more experimental section which can be of either type and will not be known to the students.
Expected No. of Questions
|Critical Reading||* Two 25-minute sections.
* One 20-minute section
|* & Sentence Completion
* Reading Comprehension (short & long passages)
|Mathematics||* Two 25-minute sections
* One 10-minute section
|* Multiple Choice
* Grid-Ins (no answer choices & you must figure the answer on your own)
|Writing||* One 25-minute essay (always the first section)
* One 25-minute section
* One 10-minute section (always the last section)
|* Error Identification
* Sentence Improvement
* Can be Critical Reading, Math, or Writing
|Experimental||* One 25-minute section||* Can be Critical Reading, Math, or Writing
* Does not count toward score Varies
Each section receives a score on the scale of 200–800. Total scores are calculated by adding up scores of the three sections and hence can range from 600 to 2400. Your scores tell college admissions staff how you did as compared to other students who took the test.
|Harvard University||2200 or above|
|Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)||2200 or above|
|Princeton University||2200 or above|
|Rice University||2200 or above|
|University of California – Los Angeles (UCLA)||2050 or above|
|University of Southern California (USC)||2050 or above|
|New York University (NYU)||1950 or above|
|University of Colorado – Boulder||1850 or above|
|University of Texas – Austin||1850 or above|
|University of Houston||1500 or above|
The SAT Subject Tests (or popularly known as SAT IIs) is the collective name for twenty multiple-choice standardized tests given on individual subjects. A student typically chooses which tests to take depending upon college entrance requirements for the college in which he or she is planning to apply. Every test is now a one-hour timed test.
SAT subject tests relevant for engineering aspirants:
SAT Subject Test in Mathematics Level 1
SAT Subject Test in Mathematics Level 2
SAT Subject Test in Chemistry
SAT Subject Test in Physics
Average (Mean) Scores of SAT takers in SAT Subject Tests
|Mathematics Level 1: 596||Chemistry: 630|
|Mathematics Level 2: 639||Physics: 647|
Why should I appear in the SAT?
If you dream of doing your B.Tech. / B.E. from a US University / College, SAT is almost always essential as a key admission criterion. While universities also demand your credentials at school level and letters of recommendation from your school teachers, there might be differences in assessment in various schools in different countries. SAT provides the universities a standardized score.
Most selective colleges recommend applicants to submit scores for any two SAT Subject tests. Engineering colleges typically require Chemistry or Physics and prefer Mathematics Level 2. A handful of the most competitive colleges, such as MIT, Harvard University and Princeton University, still require three Subject tests in addition to the three sections of the SAT. It is important to consult the college’s website to find out more information about Subject test requirements.
Remember, your scores are not the only information colleges use in their admission decisions. They may also consider your high school record, essays, recommendations, interviews, and extracurricular activities.
Apart from being a prerequisite for admission to US universities, the SAT is also important for the following reasons:
Many scholarships require a minimum SAT score
Many universities, especially state universities, will offer academic scholarships for students with a certain GPA and a minimum SAT score.
The SAT is a great way to set you apart from the college admissions crowd. Having a high SAT score will allow you to stand out from the thousands of other people applying to college.
Why to pursue an engineering career in the US?
Better, latest and most advanced research facilities.
Emphasis given to all round personality development along with college studies.
Application based teaching – Concepts and methods taught are practical and relevant to the industry.
More opportunities for research, higher studies and jobs.
When and where is the SAT conducted?
The SAT is offered six times a year in India, in October, November, December, January, May, and June. The test is typically offered on the first Saturday of the month. For exact dates please refer www.collegeboard.com. Candidates may either take the SAT Reasoning Test or up to three SAT Subject Tests on any given test date.
Candidates wishing to take the test may register online at the College Board’s website http://www.collegeboard.com or by mail. To register by mail, you need a SAT Registration Booklet, which is available at your school counselor’s office. The Registration Form and return envelope are included in the SAT Registration Booklet. For more details students can contact US Educational Foundation in India (USEFI) or visit their website www.fulbright-india.org.
In India, SAT is conducted at the following cities: Ahmedabad, Amritsar, Bangalore, Chennai, Cochin, Gurgaon, Hyderabad, Kodaikanal, Kolkata, Mumbai, Mussoorie, New Delhi and Pune.
Students receive their online score report approximately three weeks after administration of the test (six weeks for mailed, paper scores).
When and how should I start preparing for the SAT?
Because the SAT is the most important test for college admissions to the US, it is always best to start preparing as early as possible. This allows more preparation time to achieve score goals.
Most good colleges require the students to send in their applications with SAT scores by November / December of their class XII year. This implies that a student should appear for the October or November SAT. Ideally a student should appear for the May / June SAT so that they have sufficient time to complete their college applications including essays, recommendations and transcripts from teachers, filling up of forms etc. This means a student should start the actual SAT preparation before the beginning of class XI as there are no distractions such as school homework, projects, exams or any other school activities. In fact, to develop a strong foundation a student should start clearing the basic fundamentals from class IX and X itself as most of the questions are based on the concepts taught in IX and X.