Changes Announced to the SAT®

The College Board Shares More Details about the 2016 SAT

On April 16, 2014, the College Board released more information about their planned changes to the 2016 SAT. The announcement showcases the large scope and impact these changes will have on students. While the old "SAT words" will disappear, new concepts like "Cross-Test Scores", "Subscores", and "Primary Sources" will enter the lexicon of students on their path to college.

Below is a comprehensive summary outlining the full set of changes to structure and content.

Two major highlights are:

  • The new reading section will be a full 65 minutes long and include four longer passages and one set of paired passages
  • The 80 minutes spent on math will be broken into two sections: 55 minutes with a calculator and 25 minutes without one

These updates will challenge the stamina and focus of students accustomed to spending their days texting on smart phones and using calculators for most of their everyday calculations. Additionally, redesigned scoring of analytical skills will add complexity and will invite variance in admissions decisions.

As a reminder - current seniors, juniors, and sophomores will not be affected by these changes. However, current freshmen—the graduating class of 2017—will take the new version of the SAT as juniors in the spring of 2016.

While the announcement did not include any new information about the PSAT/NMSQT, we know that as with previous test revisions, the PSAT/NMSQT will change first in the fall of 2015, and the SAT will follow. As new information about the New PSAT/NMSQT is released, we'll keep you updated.

At Kaplan, our 75-year history has included numerous test changes, and we understand the challenges that come with navigating one. Rest assured, our team is already working to adjust our curriculum, practice tests, and other resources for the class of 2017 and beyond.

If you have any questions or comments, please do not hesitate to contact us at