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SAT Exam Syllabus (Updated 2022) | SAT Exam Pattern (Section Wise)

Written by  Rachit Agrawal, MBA

Published on Sat, December 21, 2019 1:50 PM   Updated on Fri, May 24, 2024 3:34 PM   15 mins read
SOURCE: Aman Dhattarwal

SAT (Scholastic Aptitude Test) exam is a type of admission test in college for students of high school students. Most of the students take this test when they are in 11th or 12th. Most of the universities and colleges in the United States and other parts of the world consider SAT exam scores for admission n the respective colleges. It is a test which is used to take admission in the best schools in Australia, USA, Canada, UK, etc.

NOTE : This test was divided into two types: SAT Subject Test and SAT General Test. However, the SAT Subject Test was recently discontinued by the SAT College Board.

SAT General Test

SAT General Test, which is generally taken by students applying to college programmes, is intended to evaluate applicants’ writing, verbal, and mathematical ability.The SAT syllabus for the General Test, as the name implies, examines both general knowledge and critical reasoning.

SAT Subject Test  Discontinued

More adjustments have been made, and it is now official that the College Board will be implementing two major changes to the SAT. The SAT Subject Tests and the SAT optional Essay are being phased out.

SAT Exam Dates 2022

SAT Exam Dates 2022 will be held on March 12 according to the College Board exam will take in the written mode. The duration of the exam is 180 minutes. Various important dates for SAT Exam 2022 are given below:

TimelineStarting fromLast Date
Application form11/02/2022
Correction of Application Form 1/03/2022
Exam Date of SAT 202212/03/2022
Declaration of Result25/03/2022

Check out : SAT Exam Preparation Tips

SAT Exam Pattern 2022

The total time given for the SAT examination is 3 hours. The test scores are between 400and 1600 points. The Sat exam pattern is mainly based on two sections -evidence-based reading and writing and Math and an essay which is mainly the section are scored in a range between 200-800. The say score range is between 2-8. The syllabus of this exam is divided into 3 sections which include reading, writing and Mathematics, following table shows the pattern of SAT exam:

Sections in SAT examTime given No of questionsMarks range
Writing6544Calculate with the reading section
MathematicsWith calculator-55
Without calculator-25
38200 -800

SAT Exam Syllabus 2022

The SAT exam is a standardized examination that helps the university in examining the applicant in terms of the merits he/she has in an objective way. The test is useful for the examiner and university in understanding the preparation level of the student, along with judging the students on their skills which they have developed since the past schooling.

The SAT Exam has a comprehensive syllabus which is important to give a fair idea about what the examination seeks. While the duration of the exam is three hours, an additional 50 minutes are given to attempt the optional essay. The marks are in the range of 400 to 1600 points. 

The SAT Exam syllabus includes the following 3 sections:

  • Writing Section
  • Reading Section
  • Math Section

SAT Writing Section

In writing section, You are asked to discover errors, replace highlighted lines with alternative text, and find errors in 4 sections with 10 to 11 questions each. It focuses on on the candidate’s vocabulary and grammatical knowledge.

SAT Reading Section

Every paragraph in this section contains 10-11 questions about reading comprehension. This test, which consists of five passages of diverse lengths, attempts to assess your ability to interpret written language, grasp the meaning of words in different situations, and their connected terms with implicit meanings.

SAT Mathematics Section

Mathematics Section is broken into two sections: a 25-minute section with no calculator and a 55-minute section with a calculator allowed. It has 58 questions covering a wide range of mathematical fundamentals such as algebra, statistics, geometry, arithmetic, probability, data interpretation, and problem-solving topics.

How to prepare For SAT Exam Syllabus 2022 ?

  • Register for the test
  • Get an idea about the test format and structure
  • Familiarize yourself with the question styles and content.
  • Figure out weaknesses.
  • Set a goal that you can score.
  • Make a proper and demarcated study plan for each section of the exam.
  • Read and review all the important content.
  • Learn the test strategies in order to crack the different sections.
  • Practice, Practice, and Practice.
  • Be ready on the test day!

Also read: Ph.D. after MBA

SAT Exam Syllabus: Writing Section

The SAT Exam writing is a very important part of the preparation for SAT exam. The SAT Writing and Language test is mainly the second section in SAT exam. This section main tests your grammar and use of language. The Writing section consists of 144 questions which the student has to complete in 35 mins. This means that the student has less than one minute for completing every question. This is a very important thing for which the student has to be prepared already before the exam.

Various tips for SAT Exam writing are:

  • Write longer questions at the last.
  • Keep answering each question as you read it.
  • Take care of the punctuation.
  • Know the relationship between different ideas.
  • Your answer should be relevant to the question.
  • Your answer should be concise.

SAT Writing Exam Pattern

  • You have 35 minutes to complete 44 multiple choice questions divided into four sections.
  • You must revise paragraphs.
  • Out of the narrative, argumentative, and informative/explanatory types of writing, one will appear in the test.
  • The segment cover a wide range of topics, including
    • Humanities
    • Science
    • Careers
    • Arts & History
    • Humanities and Social Sciences

Types of Questions asked in SAT Exam Writing

The type of questions asked in the Writing section of SAT exam are given below:

  • Changes in structure to improve the readability.
  • Choice of the word for style, tone, or text.
  • Punctuation, use of grammar, subject-ern agreement, sentence structure, verb tense, etc.

How to prepare for SAT Writing Exam ?

  • Solve online test series.
  • Start attempting answers on sample questions.
  • Read the newspaper.
  • Writing always helps. You can either start with blogging or write articles on general topics and get it reviewed from a generalist. 
  • Learn the grammar rules for the SATs.

SAT Exam Syllabus: Reading Section

The SAT Reading test mainly assesses your ability to read and it will help in interpreting many similar texts which you will read in your college further. Most all the questions are linked to the passage. They are also passages with one graphic of information or two like charts, tables, and graphs. Every reading test mainly consists of a total of five passages which have 10 to 11 questions each for a total of 52 questions. From the 5 passages, one will be about the two paired shorter passages. The total time which will be given to complete this section is 65 minutes.

The passages in this section are mainly from the two important texts:

  • Informational which includes Social Science, Science, Founding documents. 
  • Literature includes works of fiction from the world or the United States.

SAT Reading Exam Pattern

  • The test will include 52 multiple choice questions distributed across five parts and will take 65 minutes to complete.
  • There will be two science-related sections.
  • One literary excerpt will be chosen from American or international classics or contemporary writings.
  • Texts from the founding documents of the United States, as well as the Great Global Conversation on subjects like dignity, human rights, and freedom
  • Extracts from economics, sociology, and psychology, among other areas.
  • Tell a tale, make an argument, or describe an experiment or research to answer queries.

Types of Questions asked in SAT exam Reading

The type of questions asked in the reading section of SAT exam are given below:

  • The main theme and the main idea of the passage.
  • Evidence or arguments which support the author’s stance.
  • The perspective, tone, style, and attitude of the writer.
  • What function does a phrase is serving in the passage?
  • Analyzation of the data on a thesis of graphs, charts, and diagrams.

What are the Questions about?

The questions in the reading test are mainly from the three categories:

  • Synthesis: Questions that ask you for conclusions and you should make connections between informational graphics and passages or between similar passages.
  • Information and Ideas: Questions which are focusing on what the passage is trying to say indirectly or directly.
  • Rhetoric: Questions that are about that how the author conveys the meaning.

The SAT reading section consists of 50% of the score in the Evidence-Based Reading and Writing Section of the SAT. This section does not involve remembering or learning any formulas or rules of commas. It just involves your ability to approach each reading passage.

Tips for SAT Reading Secretion

Some of the best tips for SAT reading section are:

  • Read-only what you need to read.
  • Write main idea questions in the last.
  • Leave your opinions at home and come.
  • Select your order for writing answers.
  • Know what you are expected to do.
  •  In dual passages do one passage at a time.

How to prepare ?

  • Find what is better in you – Time Management or Passage Strategy.
  • Learning the method of elimination helps in all the sections.
  • Experiment with essay reading and comprehension.
  • Solve Test papers along with reading an English newspaper, most preferably The Hindu for Indian Students.
  • Be interested in the subject matter of the section.
  • Practice, Practice and Practice!

SAT Exam Syllabus: Mathematics Section

Mathematics is the most feared section when it comes to the SAT exams. But if you have a fair amount of idea on the mathematical concepts of the SAT, then the preparation and exams, both would go easy and effectively. Mathematics is divided into two parts, of which one is with a calculator, and the other is without using a calculator.

Without a calculator, the section has 20 questions to be answered in 25 minutes, while the section with the permitted calculator has 38 questions to be answered in 55 minutes. The section has a score in the range of 200 to 800 points. 

The Math section of SAT exam is divided into two parts:

  • One section is solved with the help of a calculator.
  • The other section is solved without using a calculator.

SAT Mathematics Pattern

There are two components to the maths section: One that has a calculator attached to it. Second, without the use of a calculator

  • You have 80 minutes to complete a sum of 58 questions.
  • Multiple-choice questions account for 80% of the questions, whereas grid ins account for 20%.
  • Follow these instructions if you’re using a calculator to conduct math: You’ll need to answer 30 multiple-choice questions and 8 grid-in questions.
  • With your determined answers, fill out the bubble sheet provided.
  • In Maths without a calculator, there are 15 multiple choice questions and 5 grid-in problems.
  • You will be given a set of equations and references at the start of the test.
  • If you’re applying for scientific, engineering, or math courses, pay close attention to the ‘Maths without Calculator’ part..

Types of Questions asked in SAT Exam Mathematics

The type of questions asked in the SAT exam of math section are mainly from the following topics:


  • System of Linear equations.
  • Linear equations with rational coefficients.
  • Graphical representation of the linear function.
  • Linear inequalities in two variables and their systems.

Advanced Math

  • Function Notation.
  • Zeros and factors of polynomials.
  • Quadratic equations with rational coefficients.
  • Determining the form of an expression.
  • Polynomial equations (Multiplication, division, addition, subtraction)
  • Isolation of a variable by rearrangement of formula or equation.

Data Analysis and Problem Solving

  • Association of variables or independence of vents.
  • Evaluation of reports for checking the appropriateness of data collection methods.
  • Estimation of a population parameter.
  • Calculation of mean, median, mode, range, and standard deviation in statistics.
  • Unit conversion.
  • Percentages.
  • Ratio and proportion.
  • Equation of line or curve using a scatterplot.
  • Two-way tables to calculate the conditional frequencies and conditional probabilities.

SAT Math 2 Syllabus

Number and operations

  • Series
  • Vectors.
  • Complex numbers.
  • Operations
  • Counting
  • Matrices
  • Sequences
  • Ratio and Proportions
  • Elementary Number theory


  • Identities
  • Law of cosines
  • Equations
  • Double angle formulas
  • Right triangles
  • Law of sines
  • Radian measure


  • Circles
  • Lines
  • Hyperbolas
  • Symmetry
  • Transformations
  • Polar coordinates
  • Ellipses
  • Parabolas

Three dimensional

  • Solids
  • Surface area and Volume (prisms, pyramids, spheres, cylinders,) coordinates in three dimensions

Algebra and Functions

  • Equations
  • Inequalities
  • Expressions
  • Properties of functions (Properties trigonometry, piecewise trigonometry)


  • Algebra – includes percentage, ratio proportion, unit conversion, calculation of mean, median and mode, etc.
  • Advanced Maths includes Quadratic Equation, Zero, and Factors of Polynomials, function notation, etc.
  • There are two sections, one with a calculator and one without a calculator.
  • The section without a calculator has 20 questions to be attempted in 25 minutes.
  • The section with a calculator has 38 questions to be attempted in 55 minutes.

How to prepare ?

  • Practice a lot and analyze mistakes.
  • Fill the gaps in basic and advanced mathematics by applying the concepts with sample questions.
  • Master every math skill.
  • Solve the previous year’s SAT papers.
  • Solve as many test papers as you can, which may remotely be related to the syllabus of the SAT Mathematics section.

Difference between SAT Mathematics Level 1 and Level 2

The fundamental difference between the SAT Mathematics Level 1 and Level 2 exams is that Level 1 covers algebraic expressions, coordinate geometry, data analysis, and number sequences, whereas Level 2 does not. Level 2 Math covers all of these topics, as well as logarithmic functions and the law of cosines and sines. Both examinations include 50 questions and need 60 minutes to complete.

SAT Exam Syllabus: Optional Essay Section (Discontinued)

The essay is an optional section of the SAT exam which helps the university in analyzing and judging the capabilities of the candidates’ reading, writing, and analytical skills – all in one go.

The section is made in such a manner that the candidate will be expected to read a passage about 650 to 700 words long, post which the candidate will have to analyze what the author is bidding as his/her argument. The essay then has to be written in a coherent and comprehensive manner within the time duration of 50 minutes. 


  • The essay as a section may vary from the requirements of the university.
  • Since the essay is an optional paper, the university requirements should be properly researched before giving the paper.
  • The essay involves using analytical skills for reading the paragraphs.
  • Continuous practice is important for this section.
  • Candidate needs the best comprehension skills and rewriting skills in order to not miss out on any of the arguments produced by the writer.

How to prepare ?

  • Understanding the SAT Essay Scoring System is really important
  • Try and attempt to Study Sample Passages as well as SAT Essay Prompts.
  • Try to turn to professional editorial and writing outlets.
  • Prepare with Practice Essays.
  • Read your Test Day SAT Essay Passage Thoroughly.

SAT Syllabus India

College Board, the SAT exam-conducting body, has announced the SAT exam dates, along with the registration deadlines. Along with this information comes the SAT Subject test dates, mentioning it the Subject tests would be available on certain dates or not.

In order to decide which test date would be perfect for you, you need to talk to the admission counsellor. The test centers are found in the different cities in India for the SAT exam, giving the candidate a rough idea to avoid the last-minute rush. 

Also Read :

SAT Exam Syllabus


How many times can I take the SAT exam?

Ans. A candidate may apply for the exam as many times as he/she desires.

What is the date of the SAT Exam 2020?

Ans. The SAT exam has conducted a total of six times a year between January, May, June, October, November, and December.

How is ACT different from the SAT?

Ans. ACT also includes a section on Science which is not present in the SAT.

How do I apply for SAT 2020?

Ans. Approximately 5 weeks before the test date, do the applicants needs to register. One can do the registration through mail or online, the latter being more convenient.

How do I send my SAT Scores to the college I have applied for?

Ans. Two ways of sending the scores – one while registration of the test, and next after the release of the official scores. The scores can be sent to the colleges up to nine days of taking the test.

What is the SAT point scale?

Ans. The two scoring sections are Evidence-Based Writing and Reading, along with Mathematics. Each has a scale of 200 to 800 points, adding which the total SAT score is received.

What are the eligibility criteria for SAT Exam 2020?

Ans. There is no specific age or educational criteria. For countries like the US and others, the exam can be given by students who wish to enroll in undergraduate programs.

What is the registration fee for SAT 2020?

Ans. The registration fee is $47.52. The registration fee for the SAT with Essay costs $64.52. Students giving exams outside the US have to pay an additional 49 USD for registration. The registration fee for a subjects test is 26 USD.

How do I prepare for the SAT Exam?

Ans. Ideally, you should be solving the previous year’s SAT question bank. Brushing up basics along with a lot of practice for each section is the only way to crack the exam.

How much time does it take to prepare for the SAT exam from scratch?

Ans. It takes roughly 5 to 12 weeks to prepare for the exam. However, the more you practice, the better will be your chances of clearing the exam with flying colors.

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About the Author & Expert


Rachit Agrawal

Author • MBA • 20 Years

Rachit believes in the power of education and has studied from the top institutes of IIIT Allahabad, IIM Calcutta, and Francois Rabelias in France. He has worked as Software Developer with Microsoft and Adobe. Post his MBA, he worked with the world's # 1 consulting firm, The Boston Consulting Group across multiple geographies US, South-East Asia and Europe.

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