This quick guide highlights the new terminology and format of the Digital SAT parents and students need to know.
Bluebook is the name of the app College Board created for students to take the digital SAT. It also includes practice tests. Students need a College Board account to sign in.
Students may take official SAT exams on their own tablet or laptop or a device issued by their schools as long as the Bluebook app has been installed. Read more about taking an official digital SAT exam on Bluebook.
The digital SAT adapts to how a student is performing on the exam. The better a student does, the tests prompts students with more difficult questions. Theoretically this means that if the student takes the same exam twice, they may be prompted to answer a different set of questions.
This is the name being given to the current traditional test to differentiate it from its digital version. The paper-and-pencil exam will continue to be offered through the Fall of 2023. The last official exam will be December 2nd, 2023.
The format of the digital exam consists of only two sections:
1) Reading and Writing
For comparison, the paper-and-pencil exam consists of four sections: Reading, Writing & Language, Math (no calculator), and Math with calculator.
Each section consists of two, separately-timed modules. Students may find that the questions in the second module are harder than the first.
The test takes a total of 2 hours 14 minutes to answer 98 questions. Students are given a 10-minute break between sections 1 and 2.
Section 1: Reading & Writing
Module 1: 32 minutes (27 questions)
Module 2: 32 minutes (27 questions)
Section 2: Math (with calculator)
Module 1: 35 minutes (22 questions)
Module 2: 35 minutes (22 questions)
CHANGES TO READING & WRITING
The digital SAT combines the Reading and Writing & Language sections from the paper-and-pencil test. Grammar questions and reading analysis questions are mixed together.
Reading passages will be shorter and students will be given one question to answer per reading passage. This is a big change where students have to answer a series of questions based on long reading passages in the paper-and-pencil version.
CHANGES TO MATH
A calculator is allowed on all math questions, and a calculator is built into the app. Students may still bring their own calculator.
Fill-in-the-blank questions are mixed together with multiple choice.
BLUEBOOK PRACTICE TESTS
There are full-length, adaptive digital practice tests on the Bluebook app. These are the only official digital practice tests released by the College Board. Test results are not diagnostic. Students receive section and cumulative scores, see which questions they got right and wrong, and read answer explanations. Read more detailed information about taking a digital SAT practice on the Bluebook app.
LINEAR PRACTICE TESTS
A linear version is the non-adpative, PDF version of the digital test. The College Board released the full versions of the four digital practice tests that have all possible questions.
Curvebreakers is able to offer complimentary proctored practice exams and diagnostic score reports of the linear versions. By Summer 2023, Curvebreakers will offer students a way to take digital, adaptive diagnostic tests online.
What are the other options students have if they aren’t comfortable with taking the new digital SAT?
The Class of 2025 doesn’t necessarily have to take the digital SAT. If these rising juniors are able to start their test prep early, they may be able to achieve their goal score in the fall. We encourage all students to compare the results of SAT and ACT practice tests to help pick which test better suits their strengths.
- Start early and finish your SAT prep with the last paper-and-pencil exam on Dec. 2nd
- Prepare and sit for the ACT
Another way to completely avoid taking the digital SAT is to prepare for the ACT. There are no upcoming changes planned for the ACT during the 2023-24 school year. Curvebreakers has plenty of materials and experience to help students prepare.
Still have questions or concerns? Schedule a consultation.
Parents and students are welcome to make an appointment with the owner, Nicholas LaPoma, to discuss their concerns and develop a personal timeline for their SAT preparation. Start by taking a paper-and-pencil SAT or digital SAT and ACT practice tests, and review your test performance with Nick LaPoma.
Call (516) 728-1561