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Scholastic Aptitude Test



The Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) is a standardized college admission test, consisting of a verbal portion and a mathematics portion, that was developed by the Educational Testing Service of Princeton, New Jersey. Verbal reasoning is examined by the test taker's ability to correctly analyze and complete analogies, sentence completion problems, and reading comprehension passages. Mathematical reasoning is tested through the completion of multiple-choice items covering areas such as algebra and geometry, as well as questions that require the student to produce original answers. With possible scores ranging from 200 to 800 on each section, individual scores are based on a comparison of the student's performance and the performance of students taking the test in the past, such that the average score is approximately 500 for each section. Students traditionally take the SAT in eleventh or twelfth grade as a part of their college admission portfolio. While colleges and universities have traditionally used SAT scores to predict student success, some critics argue that the test is biased against certain racial, ethnic, and economic groups, and have advocated its exclusion from the admissions process.


Educational Testing Service. "Frequently Asked Questions and Answers." In the College Board [web site]. Princeton, New Jersey, 2001. Available from http://www.collegeboard.com/sat/html/students/faq.html; INTERNET.

University of California. "UC and the SAT." In the University of California [web site]. Berkeley, California, 2001. Available from http://www.ucop.edu/ucophome/commserv/sat/welcome.html; INTERNET.

Scott Weckerly

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