SAT 1 – What is it? Advice from Kathy Compagnon

The SAT I is a multiple choice general skills math, English language and writing exam administered by The College Board and given seven times during the school year. The tests are graded on a scale of 800 each; a score of 700+ is desirable; 650-700 should be acceptable depending on the other elements of your dossier. Practice does make perfect.

You can register for the SAT I on line at While you may take the test as many times as you wish, most people stop at three, and you should plan three opportunities, starting in Premiere, into your overall scheme. Traditionally, the university admissions committees retained only your highest scores from each exam, but received all scores nonetheless; there is a new option, Score Choice, whereby you would send only one complete score, but the jury is still out on which universities will accept that option.

You do need to prepare this exam; lycee students are not accustomed to the multiple-choice format, math vocabulary needs to be acquired, and speed and accuracy are essential. You should use the summer vacation to practice, and take the exam in October of 1ere. Practice books are available from Kaplan, The College Board or Amazon. There are also many prep programs you can find on line. Some people opt for private tutors; group study and consistent individual practice are also effective. Figure out what works for you. If you do opt for tutoring, make sure it is effective!


(Taken from « US Universities – A Guide », by Kathy Compagnon at