The New SAT

By Carol C. Wood / Founder & CEO, Total Learning Concepts, Inc.

If you are a 9th grade student this year, you will take the new, redesigned PSAT in October 2015 as a sophomore. By now you have probably heard that the PSAT and SAT are changing, so I would like to share with you a few of the revisions.

The new SAT will be a 3-hour test and will consist of two sections; mathematics and reading/writing/language. Both the math and evidence-based reading, writing and language sections will be scored between 200 and 800 points for a total possible score of 1600. There will be an optional 50-minute essay section, which will be scored separately from 2 to 8 in three areas; reading, analysis, and writing. The essay will require students to analyze a provided reading passage and explain how the author built his/her argument to persuade the reader. The essay will indicate students’ readiness for college level writing.

College Board, who authors the SAT, has indicated that the new SAT will focus on the knowledge and skills that research shows are most critical for students’ college and career readiness.

The new SAT will consist of 52 reading questions, 44 writing and language questions and 58 math questions. There will be no penalty for wrong answers on any type of question, which will allow students to guess with their “best” when not 100% sure of the correct answer. The math section will consist of both multiple choice and free response questions, and a calculator may be used on only one of the two math sections.

The first administration of the new SAT will be in March of 2016, so today’s 9th grade students will take the new version. Students who are currently in the 10th grade may take both the current and new SAT and also the ACT and submit the scores from the test in which they earned their highest scores. Any time a college admissions test changes, there is a group of students who are in a unique position and can submit both the current and new redesigned test to the colleges to which they are applying.

Total Learning Concepts will offer practice testing on the new PSAT and SAT this summer, along with preparation classes for those students who desire to get ahead and be ready for the new test! Check our website in March for details at!