SAT Prep – How SAT Scores Are Calculated

Summary of total scores and section scores

The 2023 SAT scores students anywhere from 400 to 1600. This is the sum of two sections (Evidence Based Reading/Writing, and Math), which together contribute half of total score (200-800). The Evidence-Based Reading and Writing section score splits equally between Reading Test (52 Questions) and Writing and Language Test 44 Questions. While the Math Test (58 Total Questions, 38 Calculator and 20 No-Calculator) is the sole factor in Math section score.

Raw Scores & Equating

Section scoring starts with the calculation and reporting of raw scores. These are the correct answers. Students are awarded one point for every correct answer. In contrast to the pre-2016 SAT, incorrect answers do not count as points. These raw scores then become scaled scores via a process known to “equating,” where raw scores are adjusted upwards or down based on difficulty levels. The scaled scores are not based only on student group performance within a particular administration. A Math Test raw score (30 out of 58) could be equated with a Math section score (530 on one version, 580 on the other). A Math Test raw score of 57 can be used to score an 800 Math section score on certain editions. However, on other editions, students must correctly answer all 58 questions in order for them to score the highest score.

Calculation and scoring of tests

Test scores ranging between 10 and 40 are provided for the Reading Test and Writing and Language Test. Adjusting for test difficulty can make raw scores into test scores. Reading Test scores can range from 25 to 26 depending on whether 26 of 52 Reading Test questions are answered correctly. 30 correct answers could lead to a Reading Test score of 29 or 30, depending on whether you answer the 44 Writing and Language Test questions correctly. Add the scores from Writing and Language Tests and multiply by 10, to determine the section score for Evidence-Based Reading and Writing. The section score for Evidence-Based Reading and Writing is determined by adding the scores from the Writing and Language Tests to each other, and multiplying by 10.

Calculation and calculation of sub scores

Seven sub-scores ranging from 1-15 are derived based only on questions from one of three SAT&#39s tests. The Writing and Language Test can be used to determine four sub scores. The Reading Test includes questions that count for the Command of Evidence, Words in Context and Standard English Conventions sub scores (10 each), totaling 18 questions for each of these sub-scores. The Math Test covers three sub scores. These are Heart of Algebra (19 Questions), Problem Solving & Data Analysis (17 Questions), and Passport to Advanced Math (16 Questions). The raw scores, which are the correct answers to each category, convert into sub scores. Because each area has different questions, this scaling of scores is necessary. If you answer 16 questions in each of the seven areas correctly, your sub score could be 10 for Expression of Ideas or Standard English Conventions; 11 and 13 for Words in Context and 14 for Command of Evidence and Data Analysis. 15 for Passport To Advanced Math. The sub scores received by a student depend on each test. They may receive a different score than the one shown.

Calculation of cross-test scores

Cross-test scores are calculated based upon certain questions taken on the individual 2023 SAT&#39.3 tests. Analysis in History/Social Studies and Analysis in Science cross test scores are calculated using 21 questions on each Reading Test, 6 questions on each Writing and Language Test, and 8 on each Math Test. This totals 35 questions for each crosstest score. The raw scores (1 point per correct answer) are adjusted for test difficulty and scaled to a range between 10-40 for each cross-test score. For example, 32 correct answers in Analysis in History/Social Studies may lead to a cross-test score between 38 and 37 for the former.

Upcoming changes to the SAT scoring

The College Board announced early 2022 that the SAT would become a digital test.

This transition is expected to occur in 2023 in international students and 2024 in American students. Digital scoring will bring many benefits including the possibility to have your SAT scores in electronic format.

periods of time

Instead of waiting for weeks, This will help students make informed educational decisions.

The College Board shared with us that scoring will continue on a 1600 point scale. Evidence-Based Reading, Writing, and Math sections will still be scored between 200-800 points. Some scores may be removed. The digital SAT score report will not include cross- and sub-test scores. Based on information available, the College Board aims to provide useful information while providing concise information. It is not clear if this will work or not.


  • kaydenmarsh

    I am Kayden Marsh, 34yo educational blogger and school teacher. I am a mother of two young children, and I love spending time with them and learning new things. I also enjoy writing about education and children's issues, and I hope to continue doing so for the rest of my life.

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