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The high school graduating class of 2018 includes the largest group of SAT test takers in history, due in part to the growth of SAT School Day, a program in which students take the SAT in their own school on a weekday.

Key Numbers

  • 2.1 million SAT test takers in the class of 2018 took the new SAT, a 25% increase over the class of 2017.
  • Their mean total score was 1068.
  • 47% of test takers in the class met both college readiness benchmarks.
  • 21% used a fee waiver to take a national weekend administration of the SAT.


Participation in the New SAT: Class of 2018
Group Number Percent
All SAT Takers 2,136,539  
Female 1,117,329 52%
Male 1,018,459 48%
No Response 751 0%
American Indian/Alaska Native 10,946 1%
Asian 217,971 10%
Black/African American 263,318 12%
Hispanic/Latino 499,442 23%
Native Hawaiian/Other Pacific Islander 5,620 0%
White 930,825 44%
Two or More Races 77,078 4%
No Response 131,339 6%

SAT School Day Growth

SAT School Day continues to grow rapidly. About 460,000 students in the class of 2017 (or 27% of SAT test takers in that class) took the SAT on a school day. But almost 780,000 students in the class of 2018—36%—took the SAT on a school day.

States, districts, and schools that give the SAT to students during regular school hours make college possible for more students. Learn more about SAT School Day here.

Expanding Access with Fee Waivers

College Board fee waivers are another way we're expanding access to the SAT and college. Low-income students can take two SAT tests and six SAT Subject Tests™ for free and access these other benefits:

  • Sending their scores to an unlimited number of colleges for free
  • Applying to participating colleges for free
  • Applying for financial aid with CSS Profile for free

Unfortunately, many of the low-income students who take the SAT on a school day don't realize that these benefits are available or that they can retake the SAT for free. We estimate that about a third of eligible students miss out on fee waiver benefits. That's why we're taking steps to identify eligible students, get the word out, and make fee waivers easier to use.

For example, we changed our ordering system last year to make it easy for educators to let us know which of their test takers are eligible. These students can then use their fee waiver benefits just by signing in to their College Board accounts. We're also partnering with community-based organizations to distribute fee waivers.


New SAT Performance: Class of 2018
Total mean score* 1068
Evidence-Based Reading and Writing (ERW) mean score 536
Math mean score 531
Met Both Benchmarks 47%
Met ERW Benchmark (480+) 70%
Met Math Benchmark (530+) 49%
Met No Benchmarks 27%
* The mean scores for Evidence-Based Reading and Writing and Math don't add up to the total mean score because of rounding.

These data are based on a student's most recent SAT results.

Score Ranges and Benchmarks

The SAT total score is the sum of the scores for the Evidence-Based Reading and Writing and Math sections. Section scores range from 200–800, so total scores range from 400–1600.

The college and career readiness benchmark is 480 for Evidence-Based Reading and Writing and 530 for Math. The benchmarks were established in a research study that examined the relationship between scores on the SAT and grades in related courses at two- and four-year colleges. Students who meet these benchmarks have a 75% likelihood of earning a C or better in a related introductory, credit-bearing college course.

Performance by Sex and Race/Ethnicity

New SAT Performance by Sex and Race/Ethnicity: Class of 2018
  Mean Scores Benchmarks Met
  Total ERW Math Both ERW Math None
All Test Takers 1068 536 531 47% 70% 49% 27%
Female 1061 539 522 44% 72% 46% 27%
Male 1076 534 542 50% 69% 53% 28%
American Indian/Alaska Native 949 480 469 24% 48% 26% 50%
Asian 1223 588 635 75% 85% 81% 10%
Black/African American 946 483 463 21% 50% 23% 49%
Hispanic/Latino 990 501 489 31% 58% 33% 40%
Native Hawaiian/Other Pacific Islander 986 498 489 31% 57% 33% 40%
White 1123 566 557 59% 82% 61% 16%
Two or More Races 1101 558 543 52% 78% 54% 20%
No Response 954 472 481 26% 44% 31% 51%

Official SAT Practice

Official SAT Practice on Khan Academy® offers video lessons, test-taking strategies, thousands of interactive practice questions, and full-length practice tests written by the people who develop the SAT—all for free. Personalized practice plans help students focus on the areas they need to work on most.

Official SAT Practice is the top choice of students preparing for the SAT. In fact, surveys of students taking the SAT found that three times as many use it than pay for all test prep services combined. More than seven million students have used Official SAT Practice since its 2015 launch, including two million in 2018 alone.

Using Scores to Personalize Practice

More and more students are benefiting from personalized practice by linking their SAT, PSAT/NMSQT, PSAT 10, or PSAT 8/9 scores to Official SAT Practice:

  • Nearly 830,000 students in the class of 2018 used their College Board test scores to personalize practice, twice as many as in the class of 2017.
  • More than 959,000 in the class of 2019 used their scores to personalize practice (as of September 2018).
  • Over 510,000 in the class of 2020 have already used their scores to personalize practice.

Research on the Impact of Practice

Students who spend time on Official SAT Practice raise their scores between taking the PSAT/NMSQT and the SAT more than students who don't. A research study—discussed in Delivering Opportunities, a new College Board report on the first full year of the SAT Suite of Assessments—looked at almost 1.1 million SAT test takers in the class of 2017 who also took the PSAT/NMSQT and found that:

  • Students who spent 20 hours on Official SAT Practice gained an average of 115 points between the PSAT/NMSQT and the SAT.
  • Students who spent at least 6 hours on Official SAT Practice gained about 90 points between the two tests.
  • Students who did not use their scores to personalize practice typically gained about 60 points.

The same study examined the effectiveness of Official SAT Practice by subgroup and found that students raised their scores regardless of race/ethnicity, gender, income, or GPA. For example:

  • Students whose parents have a high school diploma or less and who practiced for at least 22 hours gained 130–140 points between the PSAT/NMSQT and the SAT (compared to 50 points for those who didn't use their scores to personalize practice).
  • Students who scored below 800 on the PSAT/NMSQT and spent at least 20 hours on Official SAT Practice gained about 180 points (compared to 80–90 points for those who didn't use their scores to personalize practice). These students gained more points than students with higher scores who practiced for just as many hours.

To read about the relationship between the PSAT/NMSQT and the SAT, go to PSAT-Related Assessments.