Many hopeful college aspirants who are high school students have to pass through the Scholastic Assessment Test, also known as SAT. In the USA, this standardized test is one of the most important factors influencing college admissions. 

But, what is the need for the SAT tests? This detailed article discusses the complex function of the SAT, addressing any question on this important test.

1. Evaluating Academic Readiness
The SAT is essentially designed to test one’s academic readiness for college. It is a measure used to evaluate students’ knowledge and skills in essential subjects such as mathematics, evidence-based reading, and writing. 

This is achieved by determining how well equipped you are for the academic challenges that lie ahead by evaluating your performance on the SAT.

This exam does not test for “raw” intelligence; it simply determines how well you know the high school information. This makes fair comparison of the academic capabilities of the student form different schools and backgrounds possible.

2. Predicting College Success
The SAT test has one key objective, and it is to forecast the student’s performance in college. A lot of research has been done linking SAT scores with academic performance in colleges. The SAT might not be a crystal ball but it provides good information for colleges to have the right decision on admission.

A student’s SAT score assists in college estimation of the chances of their success, or failure, in their coursework. A student tends to score higher than in other classes when they do well in a test, thereby raising the chance of doing well in college course. As such, the SCT assists universities to develop a heterogeneous but academically high-quality group of students.

3. Standardizing the Admissions Process
Colleges always have a problem in assessing applicants with various educational origins equally. This also standardizes the admissions process, using SAT as a yardstick to evaluate the students. This exam purpose is intended to ensure that each applicant is subjected to the same evaluation scale, irrespective of the quality of her high school or the curriculum she followed.

Colleges can discover talented students, who may come from deprived backgrounds or schooling environments, by drawing on a widely accepted test such as the SAT. It facilitates institutions to practice affirmative action programs for students with diverse cultural, social economics, gender, and disabilities.

Image alt text: exam purpose

Author credit: By MrSeaside – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,

  1. Demonstrating Skills and Knowledge

The SAT is not just about assessing academic knowledge; it also measures essential skills such as critical thinking, problem-solving, and effective communication. These skills are vital for success in college and beyond, making the SAT a comprehensive evaluation tool.

In the evidence-based reading and writing section, for instance, you are required to analyze and interpret complex texts, demonstrate command of evidence, and use relevant reasoning to support your arguments. In the math section, you must apply your mathematical knowledge to solve real-world problems. These skills are invaluable in college and in many professional careers.

  1. Providing a Benchmark for Improvement

For students, the SAT serves as a benchmark for their academic progress. It can help identify areas where you excel and areas where you may need to improve. By taking the exam multiple times, you can track your progress and work towards achieving your desired score.

The exam purpose extends beyond college admissions; it can also be a valuable tool for personal growth and development. Your SAT scores can reflect the effort you put into your education and your dedication to improving your skills.

  1. Supporting Merit-Based Scholarships

Many colleges and universities offer merit-based scholarships to attract high-achieving students. The SAT exam purpose plays a crucial role in determining eligibility for these scholarships. Students with exceptional SAT scores may qualify for significant financial aid packages, making higher education more affordable.

Merit-based scholarships can be a game-changer for students and their families, helping to reduce the financial burden of college tuition. By excelling on the SAT, you open doors to these valuable opportunities.

  1. Facilitating College Admissions

Colleges receive thousands of applications each year, and the admissions process can be overwhelming. The SAT serves as a convenient and efficient tool to help colleges narrow down their applicant pool. It provides colleges with a standardized metric to evaluate applicants quickly.

While colleges consider other factors, such as high school GPA, letters of recommendation, and extracurricular activities, the SAT offers an objective and quantifiable data point in the decision-making process.

  1. Aligning with High School Curriculum

This is meant to ensure that the SAT tests what students are taught in high school. Such an adjustment makes the test consistent with the information that students should master in primary school. The exam should evaluate the extent of your knowledge so as to gauge your academic progress and this will be fair.
Through conforming with the high school syllabus, the SAT inspires pupils to participate fully in their learning and endeavor to achieve high academic standing during their stay at high school.


To sum up, the SAT exam has multiple functions in the college admission process. It assesses your academic strength, forecasts success potential in college, maintains equity on admission, measures fundamental capacities and helps define the level of improvement. Additionally, it provides for merit based scholarships and college admission process.

By understanding why the SAT exam is used, you will be able to face it with a clear head. It is not just a test; it is a tool that can be used to open the door to higher education and greater chances in life. Therefore, take note of how complex a role the SAT will play in paving your way towards college graduation.