SAT Subject Tests

What are SAT Subject Tests?

SAT subject tests evaluate a student’s knowledge in a particular subject area.  These exams are closely linked to the curriculum that is taught in high school level classes and are proven to be able to evaluate whether or not a student is ready for college-level courses.

Some colleges or universities will require students to take these exams as part of their entrance requirements.  Therefore, students typically choose which tests to take based on college admissions requirements for the schools that he or she intends to apply.  Also, these tests give students another opportunity to stand out from their peers and demonstrate these skills in a particular subject matter.  Almost 500,000 students take SAT subject tests each year.

Why do colleges and universities rely on SAT Subject Tests?

Although high school grades and course level difficulty can help admissions committees predict how well you will perform in college, there is no doubt that each high school’s curriculum and grading standards are different.  This can make it challenging for admissions officers to compare one student’s records to another.  SAT subject tests help admissions committees objectively assess a student’s knowledge and skill set.

Do I have to take an SAT Subject Test?

No, as long as the college or university that you are applying to does not require you to do so.  More selective colleges and universities usually require applicants to take 1 to 3 exams.

When should I take an SAT Subject Test?

You can take it at any time during your high school career.  I would recommend taking it right after you’ve completed a course that’s related to the subject test that you plan to take.

How does scoring work?

Each exam consists of 100 multiple choice questions.  They are scored on a scale of 200 to 800.  You can take up to 3 SAT subject tests on a single test date, however you cannot take the SAT on the same day that you take SAT subject tests.

How long will each SAT Subject Test last?

Each subject test is 1 hour long.

Which SAT Subject Tests are currently being offered?

There are currently 20 SAT subject tests that are being offered; they are as follows:

1.      Literature

2.      U.S. History

3.      World History

4.      Math Level 1

5.      Math Level 2

6.      Biology/EM

7.      Chemistry

8.      Physics

9.      French

10.    French with Listening

11.    German

12.    German with Listening

13.    Spanish

14.    Spanish with Listening

15.    Modern Hebrew

16.    Italian

17.    Latin

18.    Chinese with Listening

19.    Japanese with Listening

20.    Korean with Listening

How do I register for SAT Subject Tests?

Visit this website:

How much is it going to cost me?

There are a few different fees associated with taking SAT subject tests, CLICK HERE to find the most current information.

How can I prepare for SAT Subject Tests?

The College Board offers some great study questions for each test that will help get you prepared for exam day.  You can find these practice questions here:

You can also read the SAT Tips post for additional information regarding the SAT.

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Lauren Anderson is a certified school counselor who's passionate about helping students all over the world successfully transition from high school to college! After spending 6 years as a business professional, she obtained her Master’s degree in School Counseling and now spends her spare time helping students.

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