what-is-a-good-score-for-the-satSAT scores could be the difference between getting into the school of your dreams and being forced to select a school that you did not want to attend.

If you are a sophomore or a junior in school, it is about time that you start to learn about the SAT and how it is viewed by admissions councils. Every admissions council has their own SAT score requirements, but what is considered to be a good score depends on where you are applying and what type of school that you want to attend.

Read on, and learn about the scoring scale and what score will open up your opportunities.

What is the Format of the SAT?

The SAT was once called the scholastic aptitude test and was used to measure a test takers innate abilities rather than what they learned in school. Now, the test does not measure innate ability and instead measures a student’s ability to reason. To measure developed reasoning, the SAT test has been updated to include content that closely reflects coursework and questions that you will be covering in college classes.

It does not actually measure your intelligence, but the SAT will test your knowledge and skills in areas of critical reading, writing, and mathematics. This is why it is best to wait until you are a junior or early on in your senior year to test so that you have developed more skill in the classroom and through experience.

What is the SAT Scoring Scale?

You can score up to 2400 points total when you take every section of the SAT. If you break down the scores you can earn up to 800 points on critical reading, 800 points in math, and 800 points on your writing pieces. Averages range from high school to high school and region to region, but the national average is said to be right around 1500, with students earning an average of 500 points in each section.

The average score of 1500 points may be enough to get you into a public school where the competition is not very high, but a score between 1800 and 2100 is considered to be “good”. If you want to earn a score that is high enough to ensure you have no problems competing to get accepted to a private school with waiting lists, you will need a score above 2100. This might not be realistic for all, but preparing ahead of time can help you improve your scoring potential.

What Else is Considered During Admissions?

Some people wonder if a good SAT score is enough to guarantee admissions. In all honesty, it depends on how much weight the school puts on the SAT score. Some schools really weigh scores heavily, but other want to see the big picture and look at GPA’s and community involvement. You need to do your homework to find out what admissions councils value the most.

The higher your SAT score the better. If you want to find out what you should aim for, it is a good idea to look at published admissions data to see what freshmen before you scored. By doing this, you can see if the SAT scores or the GPAs are the most important to the school you have dreamed of going to.

See also: What is the Difference Between the SAT and the ACT?

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