What Is A Good SAT Score, And How To Get It?

August 26, 2021

So, you're applying for college in the US. A whole lot of exciting opportunities are just around the corner for you! But first, you have to work out how to get into the college you want. There are essays to write, transcripts to find, teachers to ask for testimonials, and plenty of extracurriculars to summarize. One of the most important things when applying to a US university is writing the SAT. This standardized test helps all the universities and colleges across America compare their applicants with one another. Therefore, it's pretty important to do as well as you can, so that you can get into the university you want. The next question is: what is a good SAT score? Let's have a look at some of the data to tell us what you should be aiming for.

How Does The SAT Work?

The first thing to understand is the structure of the SAT. Although it is scored out of 1600, the test is scaled, so there aren't actually 1600 marks' worth of content to get right on test day. The test is split into two parts, English and Maths, and each part is scored out of 800. The lowest possible score - if you get zero answers correct - is 400 out of 1600. The highest possible score is 1600. It is recommended that you get at least 1000 out of 1600 on the SAT to be able to get into college in general. This provides a basic target for you to aim at when doing your initial prep for the SAT.

So What Is A Good SAT Score?

Aside from its structure, the SAT is also not scored as a percentage. For example, in South African high schools, we often aim for 80% as an excellent score, and usually accept anything above 60% as a good effort. The SAT, on the other hand, is scored comparatively. This means that when you receive your score after writing the test, you are also told your percentile. The percentile represents the number of the total takers of the SAT test that you have scored higher than. This allows the universities or colleges you are applying to to directly compare your score with other applicants'.

For instance, a score of 1050 out of 1600 is in the 50th percentile. This means that scoring a 1050 on the SAT shows that you have scored higher than 50% of the people taking the SAT. A score of 1200 puts you at the 75th percentile, while a score of 1350 places you at the 90th percentile. These statistics can show you exactly where you stand out of the total people who take the SAT.

What Is The Best Score For My Dream School?

While these stats provide a good baseline, it's a better idea to check the average scores of the universities and colleges you are applying to. These will show you how you stack up next to the other applicants. You can check out the rankings at Princeton Review or a similar site to find out exactly what numbers you should be aiming for.

How Do I Get A Good SAT Score?

Now that you have your target score, you need to figure out how to get it! In short, nothing beats consistent practice. You can find excellent help from resources like the Kaplan SAT Study Guide, or free help from Khan Academy. You can also enlist the help of a tutor, like the experts at Genius Premium Tuition. Make sure to practice and do enough mock tests before the big day, and you can take the first step on the journey to the school of your dreams!

Remember, it’s always the perfect time to begin your journey towards studying at the university of your dreams. Sign up here for a free consultation with one of our recruitment experts. You could join over 300 student-athletes already placed in the USA, competing at the highest level and earning a world-class degree!


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