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FAQ#12 About American SAT & ACT

How did the SAT change in 2016?

Q: How did the SAT change in 2016?

A: Changes to the new 2016 SAT include changes to the format of the exam, scoring scale, and question types.

The new SAT includes a combined Reading and Writing section, formally called the Evidence Based Reading and Writing section, a Math section, and an optional 50-minute Essay. The Reading/Writing and Math sections are scored from 200-800, for a total composite score of 400-1600. The optional essay is given a score of 6-24; this score will not be reported along with your composite score, meaning your essay score does not affect your composite score. If you forgo the essay writing section of the new SAT, the test will only be three hours long.

The new SAT no longer tests vocabulary in the same way; rather than testing students’ memorization of obscure vocabulary words, students are asked to identify the meaning of more commonly used words that change in definition based on the context in which they are used. In addition to being optional, the SAT Essay is no longer persuasive. Instead, the Essay is evidence based. In terms of content, the SAT Math section will change most. These changes are discussed in more detail below.

In sum, the new 2016 SAT will have:

Evidence-Based Reading and Writing section with a combined score (Possible score: 200-800)
Math section with non-calculator and calculator sections (Possible score: 200-800)
An optional essay (Scored separately)
Composite score of 400-1600 plus the essay score
Different means of testing vocabulary
Essay is evidence based rather than persuasive
Many content changes on Math

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