SAT Math Section Text Exam Mathematics

What’s tested on the SAT Math section?

The SAT Math sections are the 3rd and 4th sections on the SAT test. During the first 25-minute SAT Math section, you are NOT allowed to use a calculator. During the next 55-minute SAT Math section, you are allowed to use your calculator.

Both SAT Math sections will begin with multiple-choice questions, each of which will feature four answer choices. Then you’ll be asked for some student-produced responses, more commonly known as “grid-ins.”


SAT Math Sections

Section Number of Questions Time
No calculator 15 multiple choice, 5 grid-ins 25 minutes
With calculator 30 multiple choice, 8 grid-ins (including one Extended Thinking question) 55 minutes
 Total 58 questions 80 minutes

SAT Math Content

The SAT Math Test is divided into four content areas: Heart of Algebra, Problem Solving and Data Analysis, Passport to Advanced Math, and Additional Topics in Math.

Content Area Number of Questions Description
Heart of Algebra 19 questions Analyzing and fluently solving equations and systems of equations; creating expressions, equations, and inequalities to represent relationships between quantities and to solve problems; rearranging and interpreting formulas
Problem Solving and Data Analysis 17 questions Creating and analyzing relationships using ratios, proportions, percentages, and units; describing relationships shown graphically; summarizing qualitative and quantitative data
 Passport to Advanced Math 16 questions Rewriting expressions using their structure; creating, analyzing, and fluently solving quadratic and higher-order equations; purposefully manipulating polynomials to solve problems
Additional Topics in Math 6 questions Making area and volume calculations in context; investigating lines, angles, triangles, and circles using theorems; and working with trigonometric functions

Pace Yourself! The exam itself consists of smaller timed sections. Do not spend too much time on any one test question—a minute or two on the hardest questions is a good guideline. Pay attention to how much time is remaining in each section as you move along. Adjust your time management as necessary.

LauraKaplan SAT Expert


Wondering what is tested on the SAT Reading and Writing section? Find out here.