The Most Frequently Asked SAT Essay Questions

Are You Looking for SAT Essay Prompts? If so, click here.

Below are the 7 questions most students and parents ask me about the SAT Essay.

SAT Essay Question 1: Where can I get free SAT Essay topics to help me study?

SAT Essay Question 2:
How is the SAT essay scored?

SAT Essay Question 3:
Who scores SAT essays?

SAT Essay Question 4:
What effect will the SAT Essay
have on my overall score?

SAT Essay Question 5:
What effect will my SAT Essay
score have on getting admitted to college?

SAT Essay Question 6:
What are the best ways to prepare for the SAT Essay?

SAT Essay Question 7:
What kinds of topics will they ask me to write about on the SAT?

SAT Essay Question 1: Where can I get free SAT Essay topics to help me study?

To get free SAT Essay topics just click on free SAT Essay Topics and you'll find several topics just like the ones the College Board uses.

SAT Essay Question 2: How is the SAT essay scored?

Two graders give your SAT Essay a score on a scale of 1 to 6. You can achieve a total score of 12 (6 from each grader) on the SAT Essay and a low score of 2 (1 from each grader). SAT Essays that are off topic are given a score of 0.

Graders are asked to grade your essay “holistically.” This means that they are instructed to look at your essay as whole judging the quality of your ideas, and how you prove them to come up with your score.

However, research has shown that there is one factor that has the strongest impact on your score and that is length. Essays that had more than 400 words achieved the highest score of 12 about 90% of the time.

Other important factors include:

Subject matter used to prove your essays: Literature and history examples tend to help an essay score better. Examples based on personal experiences tend to score lower.

Organization: One paragraph per example scores better than paragraphs with multiple examples.

Explicitness: Tell readers what you are going to tell them in your introduction and the first sentence of each paragraph. Use the last sentence of each paragraph to remind them and the conclusion to repeat your main point.

Following Directions: You need to answer the topic and make it obvious that you are answering it. The easiest way to do this is to paraphrase the prompt in your thesis and to mention your main idea at the start of each body paragraph. Remember: essays that are off topic get a score of 0.

SAT Essay Question 3: Who scores SAT essays?

College and high school teachers who have been teaching writing for a minimum of five years score SAT essays. Most of these graders are high school English teachers and have had extensive training provided by The College Board.

SAT Essay Question 4: What effect will the SAT Essay have on my overall score?

The SAT Essay is about 10% of your total SAT score. This is how I figured it. Your total score is a result of your scores on the Math, Critical Reading and Writing sections. Each section is worth 800 points out of 2400 possible. The SAT Essay is 30% of your writing score or about 240 points. Two hundred and forty points is 10% of 2400.

SAT Essay Question 5: What effect will my SAT Essay score have on getting admitted to college?

That depends on which school you apply to. Some will use the test to determine who among equally qualified candidates they will admit. Some will use it to determine if a student has cheated on their essay. To find out how your school will use the SAT Essay visit their website and view their admissions page or visit my page on the SAT scoring policies of the top 374 schools.

SAT Essay Question 6: What are the best ways to prepare for the SAT Essay?

There are two great ways to prepare for the SAT Essay. One is to read the book Rocket Review Revolution, do the exercises in the book and use their computer grading program to get feedback on your essays. You can get the book by visiting www.rocketreview.com.

The other is to read the material on this site. All of this material has been tested with hundreds of my students and has helped them achieve high SAT Essay scores.

SAT Essay Question 7: What kinds of topics will they ask me to write about on the SAT?

Just about anything is fair game. However, they will not ask you to write about political issues like the war in Iraq or religious issues like gay marriage. The questions are strictly philosophical. You can find several prompts that match the patterns of past SAT Essay prompts by visiting my SAT Essay Prompts page.



 SAT-Essay.net
 1005 N. Lemon St.
 Fullerton, CA 92832