SAT Exam syllabus

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The SAT exam syllabus includes courses students have already learned at their school over the years. Therefore, you shouldn't have trouble studying for the SAT Syllabus if you are a strong student. The SAT General and Subject Test are two different SAT exams.


  • SAT General Test

The SAT General Test is the more popular of the two SAT exams, and undergraduate institutions typically use it for admissions. The candidates' written, verbal, and mathematical skills are evaluated by the Scholastic Assessment Test.


  • SAT Subject Test (not valid anymore)

There are 5 topic categories and 20 SAT Subject Tests in all. These themes are subdivided into smaller areas. The different SAT Subjects comprise:

  • Mathematics
  • Science
  • English
  • History and
  • Languages


SAT Exam Pattern 2023


SAT Subject

SAT Syllabus

SAT Test Pattern


58 questions

This section includes questions on problem-solving, data analysis, algebra, and advanced math.

Duration: 80 minutes

Score: 200-800


52 questions

This section includes questions on Sentence Completion, Tests understanding of passages from the US and world Literature, History/Social Studies, and Sciences.

Duration: 65 minutes

Score Range: 200-800

(combined with Writing Section)

Writing and Language

44 questions

This section includes questions on expressing ideas and standard English conventions through passages relating to Careers, History/Social Studies, Humanities, and Sciences.

Duration: 35 minutes

Score Range: 200-800

(combined with Reading Section)


154 questions


Duration: 3 hours

Score: 1600



Note: The SAT Optional Essay is no longer a part of the test.


SAT Exam Syllabus 2023


Courses that candidates have already taken in their school curriculum are included in the SAT Syllabus. SAT exam syllabus includes the following:

  • Reading section
  • Writing
  • Mathematics


SAT Reading


SAT A portion of the SAT's evidence-based Reading and Writing section is the Reading section. 52 questions will be included in the part, which comprises 5 paragraphs with 10–11 questions each. There are four possible answers to each question. The goal of the reading comprehension test is to determine how effectively a candidate comprehends written material, how well they comprehend varied contexts, and the language used to describe them.

  • SAT contains three critical reading sections
  • Reading comprehension - 25 mins
  • Sentence completions - 25 mins
  • Paragraph-length critical reading - 20 mins

One pair of texts you must read together, and four independent passages make up the Reading test's five passages. 500–750 words are allocated to each passage. The following categories of documents are where the passages are drawn from.

  • 1 paragraph from a sociology, psychology, social science, or economics book
  • 2 paragraphs from scientific works in Physics, Biology, Chemistry, or Earth Science
  • 1 or 2 paragraphs from a USA constitution and the founding of the US
  • 1 paragraph in literature from a fictional work


Types of questions in the Reading test


  • How the author uses evidence

You must demonstrate in a few questions that you comprehend how the author uses evidence to support a claim. You might have to do this here

  • Find the passage's proof that best demonstrates the answer to the prior question.
  • Choose the section of the passage that best illustrates the author's point.
  • Determine how an informational graphic and the passage it is paired with are related.
  • Words in Context

For a few reading test questions, you must determine the word's definition in context. Advanced vocabulary is the main focus here.

  • Analysis in Science and Social Studies/History

Passages from the social studies, history, and science disciplines are included in the reading test. There may be inquiries like this one here.

  • Interpret data
  • Consider implications
  • Examine hypotheses


SAT Writing


The writing test consists of multiple-choice questions that require you to read passages and identify and correct errors. 44 multiple-choice questions are included in the 35-minute test, along with 4 texts. There are 11 multiple-choice questions for each 400–450 word passage. This section is intended to test the candidate's knowledge of vocabulary and grammar.

  • SAT writing has three sections
    • Multiple choice sections: 25 mins and 10 mins
    • Essay section: 25 mins


  • SAT contains three Math sections
    • Algebra and functions: 25 mins
    • Geometry Statistics: 20 mins
    • Probability and Data analysis: 20 mins


Reading and writing sections are available from

  • Humanities
  • Careers
  • History/Social Studies
  • Science


Types of writing test questions


The questions will have anything to do with the passages.

  • Expression of ideas - with 24 questions, every passage typically has six questions, further broken into three categories.
  • Organization - questions that emphasise the organisation of ideas, information, and logical progression
  • Development - questions about the fundamental concepts, the illustrative examples, and the numerical data in the graphs, charts, and tables
  • Effective language use - questions where you should pay attention to style and tone, increase precision, and reduce wordiness


SAT Math Syllabus


The SAT's Math test is divided into two sections: Math Test with Calculator and Math Test without a Calculator. With a time limit of 55 minutes, Math Test Calculator has 38 questions, whereas Math Test No-Calculator has 20 questions and a time limit of 25 minutes.

  • SAT contains three Math sections
  • Algebra and functions - 25 mins
  • Geometry Statistics - 20 mins
  • Probability and Data analysis - 20 mins


The Math Test concentrates on various math topics.

  • Algebra focuses on linear equations and systems
  • Problem-solving and data analysis on quantitative data
  • Passport to advance Math focuses on the manipulation of complex equations


The Math test contains trigonometry and geometry, and while most of the questions are multiple-choice, nearly 22% of them require test-takers to provide a solution. Scores on the math test range from 200 to 800.


Math Calculator test

Time allotted25 min
Total no. of questions20
Multiple-choice questions15
Grid-in questions5



Math No-Calculator test

Time allotted55 min
Total no. of questions38
Multiple-choice questions30
Grid-in questions8


Types of questions in the Math test


The Math test is divided broadly into four categories.



Number of questions

Heart of Algebra19
Problem Solving and Data Analysis17
Passport to Advanced Math16
Additional Topics in Math6


Difference between Levels 1 and 2 of the SAT Mathematics


Candidates who are unsure which to choose must choose where they can perform best. Candidates who are strong in precalculus, trigonometry, or both should choose SAT 2 Math, whereas those who want to perform well but are less familiar with the level 2 material should choose SAT 1. It is essential to consider the requirements of the candidates' preferred universities and programmes.


SAT Essay (Optional) - Not valid any more


The SAT includes this as an optional section. For admission, several universities request the SAT Essay score from applicants. The SAT Essay tests a candidate's ability to read, write, and analyse information. You must read a passage that is between 650 and 750 words long in this case. You have 50 minutes to analyse how the author develops his argument. Analyze the language the author wrote in this case to find the supporting evidence for his claim. No need to express an opinion.

Even though taking the SAT Essay is optional, most universities prefer applicants to submit their scores along with their applications. Therefore, do not skip this section; instead, choose the SAT Essay section unless you have a good reason to.

The SAT essay tests applicants' reading, writing, and analysis abilities. This task is supposed to take 50 minutes to complete. Candidates must read a passage that is 650–750 words long and then writes an analysis of how the author developed the argument. Candidates should hold back on offering their opinions.

Note: The SAT optional Essay is no longer a part of the test.


SAT Exam Preparation Tips


As with all other exams, students have two options: self-study or coaching sessions. You can read the comprehensive information on SAT 2023 Study Tips. Candidates who want to study for the entire SAT Exam can read the writing, reading, and math study guides to help them be at their best on test day.

Frequently asked questions
How many hours should I study for SAT?

Check the date and time of your SAT exam. If you have plenty of time, say six months, you should study for less hours every day; however, if you have little time before your SAT test, you should study for more hours. Examine the SAT curriculum, estimate how much time it will take you to cover each topic, and then create a study plan.

When one should start preparing for the SAT?

The typical preparation period for the SAT is between six and twelve weeks. Additionally, everyone has a different amount of time to prepare for the SAT. To determine what more time students will need for SAT preparation, we advise you to review the SAT Syllabus and take a SAT practice test.

What if I fail in the SAT?

The SAT does not include a pass or fail option. There are, however, both high and low SAT scores. Of course, earning poorer grades will also reduce overall chances of getting into the school of their choice.

What is a low SAT score?

A score below average is anything that is less than 1000. Math scores below 500 are deemed below average, and similarly, Evidence-Based Reading and Writing scores below 500 are regarded as below average.

Who all are eligible to take the SAT?

The College Board has not established an age restriction for taking the SAT. The biggest number of applicants to take the SAT are, however, those in 11th or 12th grade.