SAT Scores & Result: Everything You Need to Know About SAT Score Calculation

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Yocket Editorial Team

Updated on Aug 25, 2021

Exams Know-how | 10 min read
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If you are seeking undergrad admission abroad, your college may require you to submit your SAT scores. Though there are no passing scores for the SAT exam, colleges may consider different areas of your score reports.

Thus, as a student, it becomes imperative to be able to interpret your SAT score to evaluate your performance and figure out improvement areas. In this article, we will discuss the SAT scoring structure, scoring method and ways of sending scores to colleges.

SAT Score Structure: All you need to know

Once you complete the SAT Exam, your answer sheet is scanned by computer systems for evaluation, and it goes through multiple cycles of checking. In this section, we will discuss different parts of SAT scores mentioned on the scorecard and how you can interpret those.

First, let us understand the basic SAT score structure.

Reported SAT Score and Score Range

Components

Total score

(400-1600)

Sum of two sections (Evidence-based Reading and Writing (EBRW) section and Math section) scores

Section Scores

(200-800)

EBRW section and Math section

Test Scores

(10-40)

Reading, Writing and Language, and Math

Cross- test Scores

(10-40)

Questions lie in both EBRW and Math sections

Based on analysis of History/Social Science and Science texts and problems.

Subscores

(1-15)

Questions lie in both EBRW and Math sections

 

 

Also, each score type mentioned on your SAT scorecard conveys a message to you. These scores help you evaluate how you performed in different areas. Below we have mentioned what skills each score type evaluates.

  1. Total Score: Overall performance

  2. Section Score: Performance in each 0f the two section

  3. Test Scores: Performance in Reading, Writing and Language, and Math

  4. Cross-test scores: Performance in questions based on History/Social Science and Science.

  5. Subscores: Performance in finer elements of sub sections.
    Reading- Command of Evidence and Words in Context; Writing and Language- Expression of ideas and standard English Conventions; Math- Heart of Algebra, Problem Solving and Data Analysis, and Passport to Advanced Math.

How to get SAT Scaled Scores from Raw Scores?

In this section, we will understand how each SAT section is scored. We will also explore how these section scores are scaled. Note that what you see on your scorecard are scaled scores.

To help you start, let us first understand what a raw score means and then we’ll later see how it is converted to a scaled score.

Each right answer is assigned a raw score of +1 .

Then, according to a conversion table that the SAT authorities derive, your overall raw score is, mapped to a scaled score. Please note that this table varies according to test dates to ensure that your score lies in an optimum range regardless of when you give your SAT test.

Let's help you with SAT raw score conversion calculation and the SAT marking scheme step by step.

  1. For calculating your SAT score, start with knowing your raw score. If the reading section has 52 questions and you answered 48 correctly, your raw score will be 48.

  2. According to the SAT mapping table, this raw score is mapped to a scaled score. For example, in the Math section, there are a total of 58 questions. Therefore, your raw score of 58 may translate to 800 (maximum) or 790 depending on the table. This table changes according to test dates, and hence knowing exact translation is not possible.

  3. The translation of Math section raw scores is simple and is done through the table directly. However, for the Reading and Writing and Language section, the calculation is a bit different. After mapping, the raw scores of each section (EBR and W) get scaled to test scores. The sum of these test scores is then multiplied by 10 to arrive at the final EBRW section score. We will explain this to you through an example.

Suppose the following table is an example SAT mapping table that SAT authorities use.

Raw Score

(Bases on number of questions correctly answered)

Math Score section

(After mapping)

Reading Test Score

(After mapping)

Writing and Language section Score (After mapping)

44

650

35

40

43

640

35

39

42

630

34

38

41

620

33

37

40

610

33

36

Let us now take an example. Suppose you answered 40 questions correctly in the Math Section. Your raw score will be 40 and hence the Math section's score will be 610.

Now, suppose you have answered 42 questions correctly in your Reading section and 44 questions in your Writing and Language Section. In that case, your raw scores will be 34 and 40, respectively. The test scores, according to the table above, shall then be 34 and 40, respectively. Thus, your EBRW scores shall be (34+40) * 10 = 740 out of 800

For calculating the overall SAT score, you can add the section scores. According to our example, your SAT score shall be 610+740=1350

Interpreting SAT Result on Scorecard

When you receive your score card, you will see many numbers on it. Interpreting each of these can help you spot areas of improvement that you can plan to work on in your next SAT attempt. See below to know what these numbers on your SAT scorecard mean.

  1. Score Ranges: These talk about your most probable score ranges. Generally, for EBRW and Math section, these may be 30-40 above or below your actual scores.

  2. Mean (Average) Scores: These are the mean scores of typical U.S test candidates per grade.

  3. College and Career Readiness Benchmarks: If you lie above the EBRW and Math section benchmark, you are considered to be ready for college. These benchmarks are decided by the SAT and depend on your grade.

  4. SAT Percentiles: Nationally Representative Sample Percentile helps you know your position compared to U.S. test-takers in the 11th and 12th standard. For example, if your SAT score percentile is 68, it means you have scored equal to or above 68% of test-takers. On the other hand, the User Percentile helps you compare yourself to recent graduates who took the test in high school.

Sending SAT Scores to Colleges

  • You can send only four free score reports to colleges/universities selected at the time of registration. Also, you can send these up to 9 days after attempting the SAT.

  • If you plan to send your scorecards after nine days of your test date, you will have to pay an additional fee.

  • SAT scores are generally available after 4-5 weeks of the exam.

  • If you have attempted the SAT on multiple dates, the Score Choice option shall help you choose scores you would like to send to colleges. However, some colleges may require all your scores. Hence, we suggest you to check with the college first.

  • Now, we would like to talk about a SAT overall score called SAT Superscore. Sending a Superscore to a college means out of all your SAT exams, the college shall consider individual highest scores of EBRW and Math section and will calculate overall SAT score accordingly.

We would also like you to understand two scenarios of SAT score reporting.

  1. Some colleges require all your SAT scores. For such colleges, you can choose to send your scores while registering. The idea is that no matter what your scores are, sending scores to colleges can be done without any additional fee.

  2. For some colleges, you can send you Superscore. There is a fee of $12 for sending SAT scores to colleges apart from the 4 free scorecards. If you want to send your Superscore, you can pay this fee so that the college sees your best scores.

There are some other types of SAT scores and ways of reporting as well, explained as follows:

  1. Archived scores: These can be sent after 1 year of attempting SAT. Pay an extra $31 for an additional report card.

  2. Old Scores: Scores to be sent after five years of attempting SAT

  3. Rush Reporting: Score report to be sent to colleges within 2-4 business days.

Cancelling your SAT Scores

Well, let us accept the reality. We never know how things turn up on the test day. Hence, if you want to cancel your SAT scores, you can fill a form. However, there is a time window within which you need to make that decision.

You may want to cancel your test score:

  1. At the test center: After the test, you can ask your exam coordinator for the “Cancel Test Score" form. Fill and sign the form and hand over it back to him/her.

  2. After the exam: Fill and send the form before 11:59 PM ET on the Thursday after test day.

If you decide to cancel your SAT score after the exam, the form can be sent to:

You can choose one of the following options:

  1. Fax: 610-290-8978

  2. Overnight delivery via U.S. Postal Service Express Mail (U.S. only)

MAIL ADDRESS: P.O. Box 6228 Princeton, NJ 08541-6228

Other overnight mail service or courier (U.S. or international). The mailing or fax label should read: "Attention: SAT Score Cancellation."

MAIL ADDRESS: SAT Score Cancellation, 1425 Lower Ferry Road, Ewing, NJ 08618

SAT is an essential exam if you are seeking undergrad admission to colleges abroad. When it comes to a "good SAT score", there is no exact number. However, scoring above 12oo is considered a good performance. We suggest SAT aspirants to understand the type of scores to improve their performance later. Once the results are out, you can decide whether to send your super score or SAT scores to colleges based on what the colleges require.