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SAT Secret 30: The SAT Math Test: Additional Topics in Math

SAT Secret 30: The SAT Math Test: Additional Topics in Math

In this series of articles, we take a closer look at the SAT Math Test.

Math questions on the test fall into different categories called “domains.” One of these domains is Additional Topics in Math: questions that ask about geometry and complex numbers.

While the majority of problems on the SAT Math Test fall into the first three domains, the test also includes additional topics in high school math. The additional topics include essential geometric and trigonometric concepts and the Pythagorean theorem. Just a few examples of problems you will be asked to solve:

  • Right triangle trigonometry
  • Use of definitions, properties, and theorems relating to circles
  • Use of the complex number system to add, subtract, multiply, and divide with complex numbers
  • Problems involving area and volume
  • Concepts relating to lines, angles, and triangles [Explain]Since we’re dealing with right triangles, you’ll need to use the Pythagorean theorem to figure out the missing side length of the big triangle. Then, you’ll need to recognize that the smaller triangle is similar, since both triangles have angles of equal measure: △AED is similar to △CEB, with vertices A, E, and D corresponding to vertices C, E, and B, respectively. Next, we’ll set up proportions to solve for the length of EC. There’s not enough space here for a detailed explanation, but the answer is 78/578/578/578, slash, 5, or 15.615.615.615, point, 6
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