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SAT scores

Question:
What are the average scores for students taking the SAT?

Response:

The SAT (formerly known as the Scholastic Assessment Test and the Scholastic Aptitude Test) is not designed as an indicator of student achievement, but rather as an aid for predicting how well students will do in college. Possible scores on each section of the SAT range from 200 to 800. Between 1998–99 and 2004–05, the mathematics SAT average score increased by 9 points, but it decreased by 12 points between 2004–05 (520) and 2015–16 (508). The critical reading average score decreased by 14 points between 2004–05 (508) and 2015–16 (494). Between 2005–06 (the year in which the SAT writing section was introduced) and 2015–16, the writing average score decreased by 15 points (from 497 to 482).

SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics. (2018). Digest of Education Statistics, 2016 (NCES 2017–094), Chapter 2.

SAT mean scores of college-bound seniors, by race/ethnicity: Selected years, 1986–87 through 2015–16
Race/ethnicity 1986–87 1990–91 1996–97 2000–01 2004–05 2005–06 2006–07 2007–08 2008–09 2009–10 2010–11 2011–12 2012–13 2013–14 2014–15 2015–16
SAT-Critical reading
All students 507 499 505 506 508 503 502 502 501 501 497 496 496 497 495 494
White 524 518 526 529 532 527 527 528 528 528 528 527 527 529 529 528
Black 428 427 434 433 433 434 433 430 429 429 428 428 431 431 431 430
Hispanic 448
Mexican American 457 454 451 451 453 454 455 454 453 454 451 448 449 450 448
Puerto Rican 436 436 454 457 460 459 459 456 452 454 452 452 456 456 456
Other Hispanic 464 458 466 460 463 458 459 455 455 454 451 447 450 451 449
Asian/Pacific Islander 479 485 496 501 511 510 514 513 516 519 517 518 521 523 525
Asian 529
Pacific Islander 432
American Indian/Alaska Native 471 470 475 481 489 487 487 485 486 485 484 482 480 483 481 468
Other 480 486 512 503 495 494 497 496 494 494 493 491 492 493 490
Other race 496
Two or more races 511
SAT-Mathematics
All students 501 500 511 514 520 518 515 515 515 516 514 514 514 513 511 508
White 514 513 526 531 536 536 534 537 536 536 535 536 534 534 534 533
Black 411 419 423 426 431 429 429 426 426 428 427 428 429 429 428 425
Hispanic 453
Mexican American 455 459 458 458 463 465 466 463 463 467 466 465 464 461 457
Puerto Rican 432 439 447 451 457 456 454 453 450 452 452 452 453 450 449
Other Hispanic 462 462 468 465 469 463 463 461 461 462 462 461 461 459 457
Asian/Pacific Islander 541 548 560 566 580 578 578 581 587 591 595 595 597 598 598
Asian 602
Pacific Islander 438
American Indian/Alaska Native 463 468 475 479 493 494 494 491 493 492 488 489 486 484 482 471
Other 482 492 514 512 513 513 512 512 514 514 517 516 519 520 519
Other race 519
Two or more races 505
SAT-Writing
All students 497 494 494 493 492 489 488 488 487 484 482
White 519 518 518 517 516 516 515 515 513 513 511
Black 428 425 424 421 420 417 417 418 418 418 415
Hispanic 436
Mexican American 452 450 447 446 448 445 443 442 443 438
Puerto Rican 448 447 445 443 443 442 442 445 443 442
Other Hispanic 450 450 448 448 447 444 442 443 443 439
Asian/Pacific Islander 512 513 516 520 526 528 528 527 530 531
Asian 534
Pacific Islander 423
American Indian/Alaska Native 474 473 470 469 467 465 462 461 461 460 447
Other 493 493 494 493 492 492 491 490 491 487
Other race 491
Two or more races 488

—Not available.
†Not applicable.
1Data for 2015–16 seniors cannot be compared to data for previous graduating cohorts because the 2015–16 data include testing only through January of the senior year and graduating cohort membership was also calculated differently. In addition, the categories used to collect and report data on race/ethnicity in 2015–16 are not comparable to those used in prior years.
NOTE: Data for 2009–10 and earlier years are for seniors who took the SAT at any time during their high school years through March of their senior year. Data for 2010–11 through 2014–15 are for seniors who took the SAT at any time during their high school years through June of their senior year. Data for 2015–16 are for seniors who took the SAT at any time during their high school years through the January 2016 administration, which was the final administration prior to a major test redesign; because of the smaller number of test administrations and other differences, the 2015–16 data are not comparable to data for earlier years. For all data years, if a student took the SAT more than once, the most recent score on each section was used. Possible scores on each section of the SAT range from 200 to 800. Prior to 2006, the critical reading section was known as the verbal section. The writing section was introduced in March 2005. The SAT was formerly known as the Scholastic Assessment Test and the Scholastic Aptitude Test.
SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics. (2018). Digest of Education Statistics, 2016 (NCES 2017-094), Table 226.10.

Related Tables and Figures:  (Listed by Release Date)