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A Comprehensive Guide to the Digital SAT: Everything You Need to Know

3 Min Read
July 04, 2023

Did you hear that the SAT is going digital? Traditionally, the SAT has been taken in-person at designated testing centers, but recent advancements have made it possible to take the test digitally, leaving the old pen-and-paper way. This might be a big thing because the Digital SAT also comes with so many changes that you need to know. Let’s deep dive into it below!

Digital SAT Structure

The digital SAT is administered on a computer, and  you are given a set amount of time to complete each section. The test is timed, and you can't move on to the next section until the time for the current section has elapsed.

During the test, you will have to tackle some tests on a time limit. The digital SAT is divided into two sections: Reading & Writing and Math. In the English Reading and Writing section, you have 64 minutes to complete the section. In the math section, you will have 70 minutes to complete the section. In total, you will have about 2 hours and 14 minutes.

Each section is divided into 2 equal length modules, and there is a 10-minute break between the Reading and Writing section and the Math section. The first module of each section contains a broad mix of easy, medium, and hard questions. Based on how students perform on the first module, the second module of questions will either be more difficult or less difficult.

According to College Board, compared to the ACT®, the SAT provides 68% more time per question:

Component Time Allotted (minutes) Number of Questions/Tasks
Reading and Writing 64 (two 32-minute modules) 54
Math 70 (two 35-minute modules) 44
Total 134 98

Digital SAT Device Requirements

Before you take the digital SAT, you'll need to fulfill device requirements. You need to do this to make sure that your test goes smoothly. Moreover, it is important for you to know what device you'll be testing with as well as any device requirements or technical specifications.

The College Board suggests you download a bluebook application for taking the test. The Bluebook is an application developed by the College Board, which is primarily used by students taking digital SAT and Advanced Placement (AP) exams, as well as other College Board exams.

By utilizing the Bluebook application, you can take these exams in a secure and controlled environment that is designed to ensure fairness and accuracy. The Bluebook is designed to be user-friendly and intuitive, making it easy for you to navigate the test and answer questions in a timely and efficient manner.

Before test day, you'll need to download this application to the device you’re going to test with. Then 1–5 days before your test, you'll complete a quick exam setup. The application will confirm that your device meets all requirements and will download your test and generate your admission ticket.

Digital Test Security and Fairness

The College Board, as an organization dedicated to promoting access to higher education, places a strong emphasis on ensuring that all students have an equal and fair opportunity to demonstrate their college readiness. This includes implementing comprehensive test security and fairness policies that are designed to prevent any form of unfair advantage and ensure that every student is evaluated on their own merits.

These policies are carefully developed to create a level playing field for all test takers, regardless of their background or circumstances. The College Board takes a zero-tolerance approach to any form of cheating, misconduct, or tampering with test materials, and employs various measures to detect and prevent such actions.

The digital SAT is a modern and convenient way for students to take this important standardized test. With its user-friendly interface and reliable software, the digital SAT offers many advantages, including more efficient testing times, fewer questions, and the ability to take the test from anywhere with an internet connection.