The SAT is a paper-based standardized test designed to assess a student’s readiness for undergraduate studies at college. An SAT score is a requirement for freshman entry to many universities and is accepted by nearly all colleges in the US.
The SAT has undergone several name changes since inception in 1926. It was first called the Scholastic Aptitude Test, then the Scholastic Assessment Test. The current form of the test, introduced in 2005, is called the SAT Reasoning Test.
Formerly developed, published, and scored by Educational Testing Service (ETS), it is now owned, published, and developed by the College Board, a private non-profit organization in the US. However, ETS continues to administer and score the SAT.
According to the College Board, the SAT measures literacy and writing skills and analysis and problem solving skills.
In the US, there are significant differences with regard to funding, curricula, and grading among secondary schools because of the federal nature of the US, local control, and the popularity of private, distance, and home education. This situation results in significant differences between students with regard to their performance – as indicated by their course work, grades, and class rank. The SAT scores help admissions officers to compare students from different secondary education backgrounds.
The SAT also helps students make up for inadequacies in their school-level performance.