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What is the Average SAT Scores for Colleges?

Oct 17, 2022

SAT scores for colleges? In 2021-2022, schools will go test-optional for a limited time because of COVID-19.Because of the COVID-19 pandemic’s issues, several schools have implemented a test-optional policy for pupils seeking college for the year 2021-2022 admissions cycle.

In addition, several colleges first developed a test-optional approach to assist candidates impacted by the removal of SAT testing dates in 2020. However, several schools have elected to keep their test-optional policy in place indefinitely.


So, what is a good SAT score? 

A good SAT score is anyone that gets you into the program of your choosing. You must look at the typical scores of the students enrolled in your program who are aiming for the SAT to make this determination. Obviously, if you want to enroll in a reputable college, you should strive for a score of at least 1400. 

What Are Good College SAT Scores?

First and foremost, what are desirable SAT scores for college? In actuality, there is no one solution because desirable SAT scores for colleges vary based on where you apply.


For example, an SAT score of 1400 will be very high for some institutions while quite low for others. As you might expect, top-ranked, ultra-competitive colleges often seek candidates with some of the highest SAT scores. A 25th percentile score indicates that 25% of students scored below or at this level.

In contrast, a 75th percentile score suggests that 75% of students scored below or at this level. Thus, the 25th percentiles and 75th percentiles designate the mid 50% of approved candidates’ SAT scores—the average SAT scores for colleges range for a specific institution. SAT scores in the 75th percentile or higher are considered good SAT scores for colleges.


SAT Scores for the Top 25 Schools in the United States

USUS RankingSAT score at the 25th percentileSAT score at the 75th percentileAverage SAT score
John Hopkins9148015701525
Notre Dame19129015201405
UC Berkeley22129015301410
University of Michigan23134015601450
Carnegie Mellon25146015601510
University of Virginia25132015101415

What Is an Average SAT Score? How Do SAT Scoring Percentiles Work?

After taking the SAT, you may wonder how you compare to the typical SAT taker. Surprisingly, there are multiple methods for calculating and categorizing average SAT test results. They include national averages, ethnicity, gender, family income, and high school type averages.
Still, you must grasp SAT test scoring, the several sorts of SAT averages, and which score percentiles are most relevant for your future education and career ambitions.

What is the typical SAT score?

The average SAT scores for colleges is 1051, according to the 2020 College Board Annual Report, with 528 on the Evidence-Based Reading and Writing portion and 523 on the Math exam.
● 528 in Evidence-Based Writing and Reading
● 523 in mathematics
● 1051 points total


What is the average SAT score in the United States?

The College Board reports that the nationwide average SAT scores for colleges (2020) is:
● ERW 528
● Math 523
● Total 1051.

As a result, if you score more than 1060, you will have scored more than the national average. This indicates you will have outperformed the majority of test-takers.


A score of less than 1050, on the other hand, means that you scored lower than the national averages and lower than the majority of test-takers.

State-by-State Average SAT Scores

Every state scores differently on the SAT test, owing to differences in how they prioritize it. In other states, all high school students must take the exam, resulting in a substantially larger participation percentage but a lower overall average.


Conditions that encourage but do not compel students to take the test often have better standards since fewer students are assessed.

Which of the Following States has the Highest Average SAT Score?

As stated in the preceding section, the states with the lowest participation percentages tend to have the highest averages. Minnesota is no different. Minnesota has the highest standard SAT score of any form, with 1257 and a participation percentage of 4%.


This is a whopping 206 points higher than the national average. Wisconsin and Kansas came in second and third, respectively, with average exam scores of 1243 and 1237.

Which States have the Highest Rates of SAT Participation?

Even though greater participation rates tend to correspond with lower overall average Sat scores for colleges, higher participation rates are positive. It demonstrates that states are devoted to education and want to understand how each kid learns, rather than merely assessing the most educated or motivated students.

Having said that, eight states mandate the SAT test for all students. Here are the states with 100% SAT participation rates:
● Delaware
● Connecticut
● District of Columbia
● Idaho
● Florida
● Colorado
● Michigan

Do I Need to have an SAT, ACT, or Another Standardized Test Score?

During COVID-19, many kids wonder if they need to take the SAT or ACT to get into top US institutions. Fairest records 1200+ schools and their test-blind and test-optional requirements for students who are unsure whether the institutions they wish to attend require the SAT or ACT.

ACT/SAT scores are simply one factor that universities consider when considering admissions candidates. Academic rigor, academic grades, other students at your school compared to you, extracurricular activities, personal attributes, and how much support your school offers you are all variables that schools examine.

These are just a few considerations, but academics and testing are only one component. In previous years, standardized testing, like SAT and ACT scores, played an important role in admissions judgments. An SAT/ACT score provides universities with a benchmark for determining how a student compares to other students at their institution.

How can High ACT/SAT Scores Affect College Admissions?

Filtering: For starters, a high score indicates that a student may typically get through some severe screening by highly elite colleges.
Scholarships: Top institutions also utilize SAT scores and cutoffs to allocate merit assistance and scholarship funds to deserving applicants. While many students are opting out of SAT or ACT testing, and many institutions are now test-optional, many colleges will begin to emphasize GPA against high achievements, peers, excellent accomplishments, and noteworthy factors among students.

What should my SAT Score Range for Colleges be, and what do the Terms 25th and 75th Percentile Mean?

The 25th and 75th percentiles represent the SAT score range of students for each college. Students might expect to fall closer to the 75th percentile for the most selective colleges. The 25th percentile score tells students the score obtained by less than 25% of total students at a college.

The 75th percentile score, on the other hand, is the score at which only 25% of students at an institution scored above. An interquartile score is the SAT score range of values between the 25th and 75th percentiles. If you intend to apply to a university, it is advantageous to be in the middle 50% as a starting point.

How to Send Scores?

1. Before the Publication of Scores

  • You may send four complimentary score reports to universities when you register for the weekend SAT. This is the quickest way to transmit results to universities and scholarship organizations, and there is no price.
  • You can utilize your free score reports until 11:59 p.m. ET, nine days following the exam.
  • Take the SAT on a school day.
  • You can select which schools, universities, or scholarship programs you want to get your four free score reports when you finish your answer sheet.

2. Following the Publication of Scores

  • There is a cost if you transmit scores after you have received them.
  • However, if you use a charge waiver, your score reports remain free when you receive your results.

Rush reporting

  • Rush reports are delivered in 1–4 business days.
  • Only scores that have already been issued are eligible for rush reporting.
  • Rush reports are not changeable or cancellable.
  • Check with the institutions to whom you’re sending your scores.
  • Check to discover whether the institution or university accepts October and November scores to fulfill deadlines if you’re applying for an early decision or early action.

How to Apply for a Fee Waiver

If you believe you are qualified, your school counselor or a representative of a recognized community-based group can assist you in obtaining a cost waiver. Fee exemptions are available for homeschooled students by contacting a local high school counselor. Simply submit proof of eligibility, such as tax returns or proof of enrollment in a government assistance program.

What constitutes a good SAT scores for colleges varies according to the schools and universities you are applying to. Of course, the higher your SAT score, the better your chances of admission to a prestigious institution, but it is only one component of an application.

It is examined alongside your grades, any essays or statements provided, as well as extracurricular activities, charitable work, and other factors. Having said that, it’s still an excellent objective to perform well on your SAT.

Frequently Asked Questions:

1. What is the SAT?

The SAT is an entrance exam preferred by most colleges and universities to make admissions decisions. It is a multiple-choice, pencil-paper test. It is meant to measure a high school student’s preparedness for college and provides one common data point to compare all applicants.

2. When is the SAT?

The upcoming SAT dates are December 3, 2022, and March 11, 2023.

3. What does SAT stand for?

As an acronym, it stood for ‘Scholastic Aptitude Test’, but as the test evolved the meaning was dropped.

4. What SAT scores are required for colleges?

To enter the top 100 schools, you need a composite SAT score of at least 1200, preferably 1400 or higher.

5. Is 1300 a good SAT score?

A score of 1300 is pretty good. It slots you in the top 88th percentile. The score indicates you have fared well above the average job.

6. Is 1400 a good SAT score in 2021?

A score of 1400 is good on the SAT and it is enough to gain admission to a good college.

SAT score for colleges


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