About SAT Administration
SAT Administration and Fees
The SAT is currently offered 7 times per year in the United States: August, October, November, December, March, May, and June. International testing dates are similar, but we encourage you to spend time familiarizing yourself with these dates and checking them regularly, as they are subject to change. Beginning in the spring of the 2022-2023 academic year, international students will be able to take the SAT digitally on computer. Students in the United States will be able to take the test digitially beginning in 2024. Advance registration is required to take the exam and can be completed online, by phone, or by mail. Most test takers register online through the College Board, and the registration service is free and takes less than 30 minutes. Registering to take the SAT costs $60 for students in the United States. For those students outside of the United States, registration costs $60 plus an associated regional fee which ranges from $43-$53. Photo submission is required with registration. Further charges apply if a student wishes to send more than four score reports to universities, and there are also fees for late registration, change of registration, canceling registration, late canceling registration, rushed score reports, and obtaining scores over the phone. In some cases, fee waivers are available to 11th and 12th graders in the United States and U.S. territories who meet one of the following critera:
The student is enrolled in or eligble to participate in the federal National School Lunch Program
The student comes from a family whose income falls within the Income Eligibility Guidelines set by the USDA Food and Nutrition Service
The student is enrolled in a program at the federal, state, or local level that aids students from low-income families
The student’s family receives public assistance
The student is homeless, lives in federally subsidized public housing, or lives in a foster home
The student is a ward of the state or an orphan
Citizens of the United States living internationally may also be eligible for fee waivers, as well, and should check with their local testing center or school guidance counselor for the most current information and requirements.
Taking the SAT
The majority of students take the SAT in either their junior or senior year of high school, with many students taking the test in both years in an effort to boost their scores. Juniors generally take the exam in the spring semester, while seniors take it in the fall semester. Most students improve their scores on subsequent test attempts, highlighting the importance of practice and preparation. Independent research has shown that SAT prep classes and/or private tutoring can significantly enhance test performance. SAT preparation services help students learn test-taking strategies and time management skills, and also provide guided practice and a higher level of knowledge of test questions and methods of assessment. These services give students confidence in their abilities, which furthers their benefits and allows juniors and seniors to complete the exam to the best of their abilities.
SAT Administration Policies
Test-takers should be familiar with the rules and regulations associated with administration of the 2022 SAT. The SAT is roughly three hours (180 minutes) of actual testing material. There are two breaks, one that is ten minutes long and one that is five minutes long, bringing the total amount of time required to complete the exam to three hours and fifteen minutes. If you are assigned an experimental section, this will add an additional 22 minutes to your exam (20 minutes of testing and a two-minute break). The first break comes after the Reading section and before the Writing and Language section, and the second break comes between the different Math sections.
Every test administration center follows the same timeline with regards to SAT administration: doors will open at 7:45 a.m., allowing students to enter, and then doors will be closed promptly at 8 a.m. for instructions to be given so testing can begin. In order to be admitted to the testing center on test day, students are required to present both a photo admission ticket (provided with registration) and a valid photo ID (e.g. driver's license, passport, or school ID). The name on the identification must exactly match the name used for registration. Students should bring a calculator, at least two no. 2 pencils, and an eraser. Students are also allowed to bring a watch (without an audible alarm), drinks and snacks, and extra batteries. Cell phones, laptops, tablets, and other electronic devices are not allowed, and students who are late will not be permitted to take the test. Calculators will be checked to make sure students are only using approved devices.
Upon arrival, each student will be assigned a seat after the proctor has checked IDs and admission materials. The proctor will read instructions from the official administration manual out loud and answer any questions about testing procedures. Proctors will not answer questions about the content of the SAT. The proctor will instruct test takers when to begin and end a specific section, and the proctor will collect and count all test booklets before dismissing everyone.
SAT Administration for Students with Disabilities
Accommodations are available for students with disabilities. Students seeking accommodations must secure approval from the College Board's Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD) prior to taking the SAT, and it is recommended that students and their families begin this process early, as the requirements can be quite specific, with the process often taking much longer than expected. Applicants for these services should note that local school board designation of disabled status does not automatically confer entitlement to accommodations while taking the SAT, nor does having a 504 plan or individualized education program (IEP) in place; each student must complete the College Board's own approval process.
In most cases, a student must have a documented long-term disability, such as blindness or motor impairments, although the College Board will consider requests based on short-term medical issues. Students must also demonstrate that their disability affects their ability to take the SAT, that the requested accommodations are necessary, and that they have received these accommodations in the past. According to the College Board, the most frequently requested accomodations include extended time, additional or longer breaks, reading and seeing accomodations, accomodations related to recording responses, use of a four-function calculator, and the use of assistive technology. In general, the College Board uses seven criteria when determining whether or not to grant accomodations:
The student's diagnosis is clearly stated.
The information is current.
The student's educational, developmental, and medical history is presented.
The diagnosis is supported by the included information.
The functional limitation is described.
The recommended accomodations are justified.
The evaluators' professional credentials are established.
For those students with cognitive disabilities, such as learning disorders or attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), a comprehensive cognitive and achievement assessment is required, generally administered by a pediatric neuropsychologist. Disorders of cognition generally require more extensive paperwork than strictly medical diagnoses, and while accomodations related to cognitive and/or psychiatric disorders are infrequent, they may be obtained with the proper documentation.
Academic Honesty and the SAT
The College Board has taken a variety of steps to prevent cheating on the SAT. When creating the test, materials are never posted online and never emailed, and the computers used to write the test are never connected to the internet. Transportation of the tests is secure, and educators who handle the tests, such as school principals or exam proctors, are thoroughly trained in security protocols. With the SAT going digital beginning in 2023 for international students and 2024 for students in the United States, security is expected to be even stronger, as each student will complete a unique version of the exam. Even with such measures in place, however, cheating on the SAT has not been completely eliminated. As a final countermeasure, the College Board has been known to deploy "investigators" posing as test-takers in order to observe and report suspicious activity. Generally speaking, violation of any test security policies results in dismissal and cancellation of scores. These include use of unauthorized electronic devices, sharing information with other test-takers, misrepresenting one's identity, consulting prohibited resources such as textbooks, reading test materials without completing an answer sheet, leaving the testing room during the test, or attempting to access test materials before or after the testing period. The College Board fully investigates all allegations of academic dishonesty and refers any violations of applicable laws to the appropriate authorities.