Need Help?

Get in touch with us


What Math Is On The SAT? Data Analysis & Heart Of Algebra

Oct 8, 2022

What Math Is On The SAT?

Are you wondering about SAT math prep? Read on to know what to expect in an SAT math section.

Preparing for exams is challenging due to the extensive curriculum it follows and the uncertainty of the questions you might face. Making SAT your target would first originate a question on what type of math is on the SAT. And the quest can get you a little overwhelmed. Considering this, we have come up with this article about SAT Math. Let’s find out what math is on the SAT buffet brings to you.


Exams like the SAT need you to be well prepared and have a few other skills that assure you to make the right move in three hours. While Reading, Writing & Language could be the substantial sections you can quickly go through, the math section may surprise you with its concepts and topics. But do not worry; we will guide you better.

What Can You Expect In Math SAT?

The SAT math section brings you three critical topics you will see in your incoming college years. The three topics are Heart of Algebra, Passport to Advanced Math, and Problem Solving and Data Analysis. Let us break these down further for you to understand better.


The three primary kinds of questions are Heart of Algebra, Passport to Advanced Math, and Problem Solving and Data Analysis by the College Board (they gave up on the creative naming once they reached the third category). 

About 90% of the SAT math questions fall into one of these three categories. The remaining 10% are referred to as Additional Topics, and they primarily consist of complex numbers, geometry, and fundamental trigonometry. 


Heart of Algebra

It brings you questions from linear equations, systems of linear equations, and functions in practice in many study fields. These questions expect you to build equations that showcase a particular scenario, solve equations and equation systems, and create links between several linear relationship presentations.

Passport to Advanced Math

This area of SAT math emphasizes the math you will require to pursue further studies in a discipline such as science or economics and for career scope in the STEM fields of science, technology, engineering, and math. This area expects you to be familiar with more-complicated equations or functions as they will prepare you for calculus and advanced statistical courses. 


Problem Solving and Data Analysis

It consists of percentages, ratios, and proportional reasoning and wants you to solve problems in real-world situations. The situation may belong to science, social science, and other contexts. Furthermore, it consists of describing relationships, presenting graphically and analyzing data based on statistics.

These skills are about being quantitatively well and showcasing a hold of the math that resembles throughout college curriculum, career training programs, and daily life. These two areas of math offer a strong foundation for the math you will encounter in the future.


Besides these three major areas, the SAT math section includes questions on Additional Topics in math. Some of these questions emphasize key concepts from geometry, including the application of area, surface area, volume, and coordinate geometry. This part is another example of proportional reasoning and the properties of angles, lines, triangles, circles, and polygons.

Also, it includes questions that focus on the fundamental ideas of trigonometry and radian measure, which are crucial for STEM fields of study. Furthermore, some questions involve the arithmetic of complex numbers, another concept for more advanced study in math and the STEM fields. 


What are the Math SAT Assesses?

The Math SAT exam evaluates your understanding of mathematical concepts, procedural skills, and ability to apply the concepts and skills to solve real-world problems. Understanding concepts, fluency, and procedural skills are compatible and lead you to a complete understanding of mathematical methods and problem-solving ideas.

The SAT math test questions check your skills in different possible ways. The ability to flexibly use mathematical methods and ideas represents your understanding of math that can be used in various situations. Identifying and using the structure is a critical relationship between conceptual understanding and fluency.


It allows you to understand mathematical relationships rationally, and using it allows you to apply these relationships to more extended settings. Observing the structural problem in mathematics, you will understand the chapters more.  

Questions About Real-World Contexts

The SAT Math exam includes multi-step questions with application in science, career scenarios, social science, and other real-world contexts. Some cases will present a particular scenario and expect you to answer various questions in the same context. Here, you learn particular math skills and use them in your science and social science classes. You prepare for the SAT by applying your mathematical skills beyond mathematics as a subject.

The Subsection of Math SAT

The subsection of math SAT is Calculator and No-Calculator. A calculator is a tool, and your ability to decide the time of using this tool is a skill you need to own. Most questions won’t require you to use a calculator in the calculator part. You can solve many questions faster even if you don’t use the calculator.

It is up to you when to use it to perform better. At the same time, the non-calculator part will have less complex questions that focus on your ability to solve questions efficiently and accurately. You need to bring a scientific or graphic calculator for the calculator part. Make sure you are familiar with using the calculator to work efficiently. Using the calculator will avoid making computation errors and help you answer more questions in less time.

Many SAT questions can be solved without a calculator; however, strategically deciding when to use a calculator will reduce the time required to complete the test. Using a calculator can also help you avoid missing a question because of computation errors.

Multiple Choice and Grid-In Questions

Multiple choice questions cover 80 per cent of math questions and each question offers you to select out of four given options. It is evident that only one of four options is the correct answer, but no negative marking exists for any wrong answer.

Consider that in mind; make sure you answer every question, even if it is guess-answering. The remaining 20 per cent are grid-in questions where each answer includes a number, be it a fraction, decimal, or positive integer. Here also, there is no negative marking for wrong answers. 

The Time Frame & Number of Questions In Math SAT

The entire math SAT allows you 80 minutes, further divided into two parts. One part has 38 questions to answer in 55 minutes for which you can use a calculator. The other part has 20 questions in 25 minutes without a calculator. 


Now that you finally know what type of math is on the SAT, it’s time to practice every section of the Math topics. Start to ensure your chances to clear the SAT on your first attempt only. We wish you luck!



What Math is on the SAT


Relevant Articles

Calculate Cumulative GPA

How Should You Calculate Cumulative GPA for all Semesters?

Introduction In today’s college admissions environment, your Cumulative Grade Point …

How Should You Calculate Cumulative GPA for all Semesters? Read More »

card img

Strategies for Success: Mastering the Digital SAT Scoring System

Securing good marks on the digital SAT is important for …

Strategies for Success: Mastering the Digital SAT Scoring System Read More »

Is the Digital SAT Easier

Is the Digital SAT Easier? New Format & Adaptive Testing

With multiple speculations on the introduction of the newer SAT …

Is the Digital SAT Easier? New Format & Adaptive Testing Read More »

Is the Digital SAT Harder

Is the Digital SAT Harder? Exploring Changes, Similarities & Prep

High school students take the SAT or Scholastic Assessment Test …

Is the Digital SAT Harder? Exploring Changes, Similarities & Prep Read More »


Study Abroad

card img

With Turito Study Abroad

card img

With Turito Study Abroad

card img

Get an Expert Advice from Turito

card img

Get an Expert Advice from Turito


card img

With Turito CAP.


card img

With Turito Coding.


card img

With Turito RoboNinja


card img

1-on-1 tutoring for the undivided attention