The SATis a 4-part test that lasts approximately 3 hours and includes three, 5 to 10-minute breaks. Taking the optional fifth component, the SAT Essay, adds another 50 minutes.
The four multiple-choice sections include:
- Reading (52 questions, 65 minutes)
- Writing & Language (44 questions, 35 minutes)
- Math – No Calculator (20 questions, 25 minutes)
- Math – With Calculator (38 questions, 55 minutes)
The SAT is designed to test students on concepts that they have learned throughout their high school career. This includes:
- Grammar, mechanics, rhetoric, and style for the Writing and Language test
- Math through Algebra 2 (along with some Trigonometry) for the Math test
- Reading comprehension and analysis skills across a variety of genres for the Reading test
- Data analysis in parts of the Reading test
Preparing for the SAT therefore does not require students to learn a significant number of new concepts; instead, students must continually review and reinforce their knowledge and skills based on their individual strengths and weaknesses, while also gaining familiarity and comfort with the test structure (including its format and timing).