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How is the Digital SAT Scored?

Mar 16, 2024

The digital SAT emerges as a modernized approach to testing as compared to its traditional paper-based format. As technology continues to shape education, understanding the nuances of the digital SAT becomes paramount for students navigating their academic journey. 

This article aims to discuss the scoring process of the digital SAT, its structure, algorithm, and implications for test-takers. 


Section Scores 

Section scores on the digital SAT play a pivotal role in assessing students’ performance across different subject areas. With four main sections: 

  • Reading
  • Writing and Language
  • Maths (with Calculator) 
  • Maths (without Calculator)

The digital SAT offers a complete assessment of a student’s skills. Each section is scored on a scale of 200 to 800 points, with a maximum score of 1600. These scores reflect student’s performance in specific areas.


The scoring system includes converting raw scores, which represent the number of correct answers, into scaled scores to represent variations in test difficulties. While accomplishing a high overall score is attractive, understanding individual section scores is similarly important for recognizing strengths and weaknesses. By investigating section scores, students can know areas for improvement and design their planning process likewise.

Besides, section scores give teachers an analysis of student’s valuable insights and potential for progress in college-level coursework. Mastering these sections of the digital SAT is fundamental for maximizing one’s overall score and demonstrating availability for higher education.



Subscores on the digital SAT offer analysis of students’ performance within specific areas of each section. These subscores give important knowledge about students’ resources and areas for development, helping with skill development and preparation methodologies. The advanced SAT gives subscores to the Reading and Writing sections, including Command of Evidence, Words in Context, Expression of Ideas, and Standard English Conventions.

  • Command of Evidence: This subscore evaluates a student’s ability to identify and analyze proof used to help claims in sections. It assesses student’s appreciation of how creators use text-based evidence to build arguments and convey ideas.
  • Words in Context: This subscore measures a student’s vocabulary skills and their capacity to decipher words and expressions in the context of a passage. It evaluates the student’s understanding of word meaning and use in different contexts.
  • Expression of Ideas: This subscore focuses on the student’s ability to explain ideas in written communication. It assesses angles like coherence, cohesion, and organization of ideas in response to thoughts.
  • Standard English Conventions: This subscore checks student’s knowledge and application of standard English language grammar, punctuation, and use rules. It evaluates students’ capacity to alter and modify sections to stick to standard conventions of English language usage.

Essay Score

The essay score on the digital SAT, often optional, offers colleges more information about student’s writing abilities and analytical skills. This section, known as the SAT Essay, expects students to analyze a given section and build a well-reasoned argument for the given prompt. While the SAT Paper isn’t necessary for all colleges, a few might suggest or require it for confirmation.


The paper is checked by two trained readers on a size of 1 to 4 in three sections:

  • Reading
  • Analysis 
  • Writing

Every reader gives scores in accordance with the clarity of the article’s proposal, the content, the usage of evidence to support claims, and the adequacy of writing style and language use.


After both readers have checked the essay, the two scores are added together to create a total essay score ranging from 2 to 8 points. This final score provides colleges with an additional measure of students’ writing proficiency and analytical abilities, complementing the multiple-choice sections of the digital SAT.

It is important for students to consider the requirements and preferences of the college they intend to apply to before deciding whether to take the SAT Essay.


Scoring Algorithm

Raw ScoreThe number of correct answers given by the test-taker across all sections of the digital SAT.
Scaled ScoreAdjusted scores are derived from the raw score to account for variations in test difficulty.
Difficulty Level of QuestionsEach question on the digital SAT is assigned a difficulty level, which impacts its contribution to the final scaled score.
Weighting of SectionsDifferent sections of the digital SAT are weighted differently in the scoring algorithm to reflect their relative importance.
Essay Score (Optional)If the SAT Essay is completed, its score is factored into the overall scoring algorithm to provide a comprehensive assessment.
Comparative AnalysisStudent’s performance is compared to the performance of other students to check the final scores and percentages.
Statistical AdjustmentsStatistical adjustments may be applied to account for factors such as test administration conditions and question validity.


The scoring algorithm of the digital SAT offers an approach to evaluate performance accurately. By considering factors like scores, question difficulty, and comparative analysis, the algorithm generates scores that provide valuable insights into students’ academic abilities. 

Small group batches can now enroll in live preparatory classes by Turito, a live online teaching platform for one-on-one learning. Numerous live lectures, practice exams, questions, strategy sessions, additional SAT materials, and end-to-end support are all included in the Digital SAT Score Booster Live Prep Course. To get you started with your preparation, check out this free lesson! Best of luck with the Digital SAT!


Frequently Asked Question

How are scaled scores calculated on the digital SAT?

Scaled scores on the digital SAT are determined based on an algorithm that considers factors like difficulty, section weighting, and similar examination of performance.

Is the SAT Essay score included in the overall score calculation?

If the SAT Essay is completed, its score is considered in the overall scoring algorithm that provides a view of students’ writing skills.

How long does it take to receive SAT scores after completing the exam?

SAT Scores are out within 2-3 weeks after completing the exam.

How is the Digital SAT Scored


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