Shereen Backer A Jan 25, 2024
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SAT Score Percentiles: An Ultimate Guide

The Scholastic Aptitude Test, more commonly known as SAT, is a standardized test used for College Admissions in US. If you want to pursue higher education in countries like US and Canada after high school, cracking the SAT is an important task. The SAT score indicates how well a student have performed in the SAT exam by providing a comparison chart with all other test-takers. This blog will give you an overview of SAT Percentiles. Let’s check it out in detail.

Also read, SAT Preparation Tips

SAT Score Range For Different Sections

There are three sections in SAT, namely Maths, Reading & Writing Section, and Optional Essay.

  • Maths: The SAT Maths section is scored out of 800. The minimum SAT score is 200. So, the score ranges from 200 to 800.
  • Reading & Writing Section: Here the SAT score begins at 10, with 40 being the highest. So, the score ranges from 10 to 40. The scale here is similar to that of the mathematics section, which is 200-800.
  • Optional Essay: The SAT Essay scoring components consist of Reading, Writing, and Analysis. There are three subsections where the SAT score for optional essays ranges from 2 to 8. 

Also read,  New Digital SAT Exam Format

Types of SAT Percentiles

  1. National Representative Sample: It is a score derived through research. This research takes place on 11th and 12th-grade students in the USA. It takes place regardless of whether the students have taken the SAT exam.
  2. SAT User Percentile: It is based on the actual scores of students who took the SAT exam. The past three years' SAT exam test-takers scores are taken into consideration.

Also read, SAT Score 2023

What Are The Percentile Range For SAT?

You might be confused about the SAT percentile and may ask yourself “What is the SAT score needed to get the right percentile?” First of all, you should decide which college you are going to apply. In addition, you should also be familiar with the SAT requirements of the respective college. Colleges will alter the SAT Composite score range each year. Therefore, keep yourself updated about this score as well by checking their website or contacting them directly.

In simple words, your percentile score is not derived from a grade of 100, which means, scoring 50th percentile does not mean you have earned 50% of the marks. It just means that compared to all other test-takers, you have scored more marks than 50% of them. This is what makes students confused the most. In the case of SAT Score Percentiles, everything is based on individual performance compared with one another.

SAT score range can vary between sections. The SAT score can range from 400 to 1600. Here, 1600 is the highest score that a test-taker can acquire. Whereas 400 is the lowest score that a student can acquire. Most students score around 1000 to 1200.In the table below, you can see the required SAT Score Percentile. 

Percentile EBRW Maths Total
99 750-800 770-800 1480-1600
90 670 680 1320-1330
75 610 600 1200
50 530 520 1060
25 460 450 920
10 400 390 810
1 200-330 200-320 400-680

(EBRW is the short form for Evidence-Based Reading Writing)

Also read, SAT Reading Tips

What is a Good SAT Score?

The SAT score gets you admission to the program of your choice in the desired college or educational institutions. A strong SAT score can raise your chances of getting into a particular college. While there's no standard for a "good" SAT score, it's best to aim for at least 1200. More importantly, aim for an SAT score that's within or higher than your school's middle 50%. The SAT essay will no longer be offered unless your state participates in SAT School Day.

Why Do SAT Score Percentiles Matter?

Colleges use percentiles as a component in order to compare students with one another. For instance, if you scored 90th percentile, this would get you admission to most schools. Having an SAT Score of 90th Percentile means you have scored better than 90% of students who attended the test nationwide. 

By instantly tracking the percentile and composite score, it can give you a clear view of what kinds of schools you will get a chance to get admitted to. The percentile helps you to check your section score of EBRW and Maths. The same score for maths and EBRW doesn't come with the same Percentile, you need a higher maths to score for the same Percentile as EBRW.

Also read, Last-Minute SAT Exam Tips


Percentiles, whether they are the SAT essay score percentiles or the overall percentile, are vital when you are preparing for your SAT, or wish to retake. The higher the percentile number, the more competitive you are, and the better your chances of getting admission to a college of choice. It would be best if you strived to be in the top percentile to be among the best.

Also read,  Why is iSAT Exam important to study in the USA & UK

Locations Where Edoxi Offers SAT Training

Here is the list of other major locations where Edoxi offers SAT Training

SAT Course in Dubai SAT Course in Sharjah | SAT Course in Qatar | 

English Language and Soft Skills Trainer

Ms. Shereen Backer is a broad minded English language and Soft Skills trainer with Edoxi Training Institute, Dubai. She is fascinated about training young minds and professionals to reach new heights in their career. Her vast experience as an English language and soft skills trainer enables her to handle training sessions for students from diverse cultures.

Ms. Shereen challenges her students to be the best version of themselves. She holds strong records of accomplishment with TESOL/TEFL Certification and IDP Teacher’s Training Program Accreditation.

For the last seven years, she has been working with companies and universities as an ESL/EFL verbal trainer cum academic and career counsellor. She helped more than 500 individuals to clear exams like IELTS, PTE, TOEFL, OET, DET, PSAT, NMSQT and SAT. She also specialises in voice and accent training for English language students.