What are the SAT IIs?

By the time you get to high school you have already heard all about the SAT and the ACT. But what about the SAT II Subject Tests? Many colleges require them, but people do not seem to talk about them as much as the other two tests. So, what exactly are the SAT IIs?


The SAT IIs are hour-long tests that focus on specific topics. Most tests are multiple-choice. For the language tests, there is a listening portion. The cool thing about the SAT II is that you can choose which subjects you take. That means that you can pick the subjects you know best and feel most comfortable in. Even if the college you are applying to does not require SAT IIs, they can still be helpful. Getting a great score on an SAT II can set you apart from other applicants applying to the same program. Doing well on certain SAT IIs can also count for placement in higher-level classes than you would be placed in without an SAT II.


You can take up to three SAT IIs in one day, but you may take just one as well. The subjects on the SAT II are covered in a deeper context than on the regular SAT. You will need to fully grasp concepts instead of just having broad overarching knowledge of the topic. Unlike the regular SAT, you should not wait until your junior or senior years to take the SAT II. You should take it after the class you have taken that corresponds with the topic you are picking for the SAT II. That way the majority of the information will be fresh in your head and you have a greater chance for success!

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