Wednesday, August 29, 2018

SAT — your passport to undergraduate study in the US

By Naija Scholarships Buzz 

The dream of every Nigerian senior secondary school student in Nigeria and Africa in whole is to advance into their respective undergraduate programs abroad i.e., to study their choice of course abroad, possibly in the US, UK or Europe.

This desire sometimes seems impossible but one most prominent idea that comes to the mind of every senior secondary school student is scholarship;  thus many students surf the internet seeking for such scholarship opportunities that would take them abroad in order to continue their education, since they can't afford to accommodate or pay all the expenses involved in studying abroad. 

Even while some students seek for partially funded scholarships, a majority of the students aim at fully funded scholarships since funding their education as an international student at a university abroad can be challenging.
Well,  you don't have to look down on such students, you just have to put yourself in their shoes. 

In this article, we carefully explain how any Nigerian senior secondary school student aspiring to study abroad can secure admissions particularly in universities in the US with just one vital key called SAT. 

The same opportunity is also available to undergraduates who would love to start afresh in one of the universities in the US. We recommend only the year one students to be interested in this. 

For those from 200 level onwards or graduates, we recommend you apply through the alternative explained in this post Study in USA or UK for free — the wonders of TOEFL and GRE 

What is SAT? 

SAT stands for Scholastic Assessment Test and was developed by College Board for the purpose of admission into undergraduate degree programs of universities or colleges in the United States. While SAT is owned, developed, and published by College Board , the test is issued or administered on behalf of the College Board by the Educational Testing Service (ETS) — the same test makers of TOEFL and GRE

SAT is intended for secondary school students who seek admission into undergraduate degree programs or Colleges abroad, mostly in the US. 

The SAT test is in two forms:
  1. The paper-based test for which students receive their score reports via mail at about 6 weeks after sitting for the exam. 
  2. Online or Computer-based test for which students (test takers) receive their score reports online at about 3 weeks after sitting for the exam. 
In both forms, the overall duration of the test is 3-4 hours. 
While the tests comes in two forms, it is usually administered 7 times a year in the US (that is,  August, October, November, December, March, May, and June),  and 4 times a year (that is October, December, March, and May) for international students (outside US).
As of 2017, the SAT test was taken by approximately 1.70 million secondary school students worldwide. 

Note: Proficiency in English is a prerequisite for taking the SAT test. 

Nature of the test questions 

The SAT test is divided into two sections:

  1. Mathematics: The duration for this section is 80 minutes and the questions originate from the following areas of topics in mathematics; Numbers and operations, Algebra and Functions, Geometry, Statistics, Probability, and Data Analysis. 
  2. Evidence-based reading and writing: The duration for this section is 100 minutes and the nature of the questions are: Vocabulary, Critical reading, Sentence-level reading, Grammer usage, and Diction. 

* The Mathematics section of the SAT exam is further divided into two portions:
  1. Math Test — Calculator, and 
  2. Math Test — no calculator.
The Math Test— calculator section is made up of 38 questions (30 multiple choice and 8 grid-in)  and lasts for 55 minutes. In this section, scientific and graphing calculators are allowed in the exam with the exclusion of mobile and smartphone calculators, laptops, and other portable devices. 

The Math Test — no calculator section has 20 questions (15 multiple choice and 5 grid-in)  and lasts for 25 minutes. 

In total, the SAT Math Test lasts for 80 minutes with a total of 58 questions.  The score for this section is reported on a scale of 10-40 and section score (equal to the test multiplied by 20) is reported on a scale of 200-800.

* The Evidence-based reading and writing is divided into two portions:
  1. Reading: which is made up of 52 multiple choice questions and a duration of 65 minutes. 
  2. Writing and Language test: which is made up of 44 multiple choice questions and a duration of 35 minutes .
Note: All questions in each section of the SAT test are weighted equally! 

What is the minimum score I can get in SAT? 

The section scores are reported on a scale of 200-800 and each section score is a multiple of 10.
A total score for the SAT is calculated by adding the two section scores which results in a total score ranging from 400-1600.
Therefore, the minimum SAT score is 400 and the maximum SAT score is 1600.

Which schools or universities accept Sat? 

In the US, most universities and colleges that offer undergraduate degree programs accept SAT. These schools include the following but are not limited to

  1.  Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)    — (Required) 
  2. University of Alabama. As of the time of writing this article(2018), any international student ( including Nigerian students) who scores 1475 in their SAT exam gets automatic fully funded scholarship admission into the university of Alabama .
  3. California Institute of Technology (CALTECH) — (Required) 
  4. Cornell University — (Required) 
  5. Dartmouth College — (Recommended) 
  6. Duke University — ( Recommended) 
  7. Emory University  — (Required) 
  8. Harvard College — (Required) 
  9. Harvey Mudd College — (Required) 
  10. Johns Hopkins University — (Recommended) 
  11. Lafayette College — (Recommended) 
  12. McGill University — (Required) 
  13. New York University — (Recommended) 
  14. Princeton University — ( Required) 
  15. Rice University — (Required) 
  16. Stanford University — (Required) 
  17. Tufts University — (Required) 
  18. University of California, Berkeley — (Required) 
  19. University of Notre Dame — (Recommended) 
  20. Vanderbilt University — (Recommended) 
  21. University of Miami — (Required) 
  22. University of Virginia — (Recommended) 
  23. Webb Institute — (Required) 
  24. Wesleyan University — (Recommended) 
  25. Yale University — (Recommended) 
  26. Auburn University — ( Required), amongst numerous others. Check out 101 list of universities and colleges abroad that accepts SAT test scores.
* Recommended means SAT is not compulsory but is vital or useful if you want to be at the top of the list of your fellow competitors. 
* Required means SAT test score is compulsory for the admission process. 

Note: While some of the schools listed above offer fully funded scholarships, others offer partially funded;  you just have to search the respective schools for the kind of scholarship scheme that suits your needs.

How do I register and prepare for SAT in Nigeria?  

There are many centers students can register for SAT here in Nigeria. Amongst these centers, we recommend 
  1. Examplanet, and 
  2. EducationUSA
because they have reputation in preparing their candidates thoroughly prior to the SAT test exams.

Also, they provide you with all the necessary technical information you need to know about applying, sitting, and sending your SAT test scores to your desired choice of school abroad. 

The current estimated price for SAT is roughly N18,000 ($52.50) to N36,000 ($101.50).

There are other online tools and websites you can use to support your preparation for a better SAT score. These tools and websites are:

After SAT exam what next ?

Prior to their SAT exam, Nigerian secondary school students are expected to have in mind which schools in the US they are really interested in and their respective SAT minimum score requirements.

After the SAT exam, students can then forward their respective SAT test scores together with their WAEC /NECO results and other necessary documents upon request as stipulated by the schools they are applying for. 

Some centers you register for your SAT exams can provide you with additional technical support on when to take the SAT test, which schools suit your needs ,how to send your SAT scores, and many more.  Examples of such centers in Nigeria are EducationUSA located at Victoria Island, Lagos State and at Abuja, and Examplanet

We highly recommend you register for your SAT test via any of the two centers provided above as they are really worth it. 

In conclusion, we advice you to be focused, prepare fiercely and don't give up or lose hope. Success in your SAT exams. 


Don't forget to share this post with your friends who are eager to be aware of this opportunity. 

Your comments and questions are highly welcomed, simply use the comment box below. 

Location: Nigeria


  1. One should pick right test prep material and picking right location for study time is also very important. I always study in my backyard and it is free from all kinds of distractions. Have been utilizing the Online LSAT Prep course and it is way too good for me.


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