The SAT Subject Tests offer you an additional opportunity to show colleges what you know and what you know you can do. Many colleges use the SAT Subject Tests for admission, for course placement, and to advise students about course selection.


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All of the SAT Subject tests are 1-hr long, multiple choice tests. Scores are reported on a scale like the SAT I (Reasoning Test) categories 200 to 800. Scores are also converted to percentiles based on the scores from all students that took the test: for example the top 1% of the test takers will become the 99th percentile; if you are on the top 25% of those that take the test then you will be in the 75th percentile. Sometimes schools compare your results on a national basis and others on a regional basis.


Subject tests are offered at the same time as the SAT Reasoning Tests except for the March test date, when there is no subject test offered. However, a student cannot take both the SAT I (Reasoning Test) and the Subject Tests at the same time. It is best if students take the Subject Tests soon after they have completed the course so that it is freshest in their minds. A good rule of thumb is to take the Subject Tests that are strong subjects for the student and hopefully related to the field of study that they are considering. For example a political science major might want to take a subject test in History, a STEM student might want to consider taking Math I or II along with a Biology/Physics/Chemistry Subject Test. Always think about how the performance on these tests will present the admission officers a different dimension that was not presented by the SAT or ACT tests.

Students can take anywhere from 1 to 3 Subject Tests per test date. Most colleges will require students to take 2 to 3 Subject Tests for admissions purposes. Score Choice is available for students to select which scores they want to send to colleges, in accordance with that institutes stated Score Choice policy. Students should still feel comfortable sending all scores, since most colleges consider a student’s best scores. While some colleges specify the SAT Subject Tests that they require for admission or placement; others allow applicants to choose which tests to take.


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Here is a list and brief description of the Subject Tests available:

Biology E/M

There are 2 biology tests. Each contains 60 general biology questions on cellular and molecular biology, ecology, classical genetics, organismal biology and evolution and diversity. The E-test has an additional 20 questions on ecology; the M-test has an additional 20 questions on molecular biology.


There are about 60 questions on the test, based on six to eight passages. About 30% of the exam is focused on literature of the Renaissance and seventeenth century; 30% covers literature of the eighteenth and nineteenth century; 40% is focused on works written after 1900.

Math Level I

There are about 50 questions. The test covers algebra, geometry (Plane Euclidean, 3-dimensional and coordinate), trigonometry, statistics/probability and miscellaneous topics (logic, elementary number theory and arithmetic and geometric sequences.)

Math Level II

There are 50 questions on the test. Test covers algebra, geometry(Plane Euclidean, 3-dimensional and coordinate), trigonometry, functions, statistics (probability /permutation /combination) and miscellaneous topics (logic and proof, number theory, sequences, limits, standard deviation, least squares regression etc.)


NO CALC ALLOWED. There are about 75 questions on mechanics, heat, kinetic theory, motion, thermodynamics, waves, electricity, magnetism, modern Physics and misc topics

U.S History

Test contains about 90 to 95 questions. About 20% are based on history from pre-Columbian times through 1789 and 40% are from 1790 to 1898; the rest cover the period from 1899 through the present.

World History

Test contains 95 questions that cover world history from ancient times through the present. About 25% of the test is on world history through 500 C.E; 20% covers the years 500 through 1500 C.E; 25% covers 1500 through 1900C.E. The last 10% is cross-chronological.


There are about 85 questions. To do well, you should be familiar with the structures of matter, states of matter, reaction types, stoichiometry, equilibrium and reaction rates, thermodynamics, descriptive chemistry and general laboratory skills.

Chinese with Listening

Chinese with listening test contains 85 questions which measure your ability in listening comprehension, usage and reading comprehension.


The Spanish test contains 85 questions. Test material equally covers vocabulary and structure, paragraph completion and reading comprehension

Spanish with Listening

This test features 85 questions, including a 20-min listening section and a 40-min reading section


This test contains 85 questions which gauge your understanding of vocabulary in context, structure and reading comprehension.

French with Listening

The French with Listening test includes about 20 minutes of listening questions and 40 min of reading comprehension questions. The listening section contains pictures, short dialogues and long dialogues. The rest of the test covers vocabulary, structure and reading comprehension.


This test contains 80 to 85 questions which measure reading ability only.

German with Listening

The German w/Listening features a 20-min listening sections, including long and short dialogues. There is also a 40-min section that covers vocabulary in context, structure in context and reading comprehension.

Modern Hebrew

This test contains 85 questions that measure your reading comprehension skills, ability to understand vocabulary in context and knowledge of structure and context.


This test contains 80 to 85 questions. To do well, you must understand vocabulary in context, successfully answer fill-in-the blank questions and demonstrate good reading comprehension.

Japanese with Listening

This test contains 80 to 85 questions and covers listening comprehension, usage and reading comprehension.

Korean with Listening

This test contains 80 to 85 questions and includes a 20-min usage section and a 40-min reading comprehension section.


This test contains 70 to 75 questions. About 65% of the test measures your translation ability, 5% covers derivatives and roughly 30% covers grammar and syntax.