What Does SAT Stand For

What Does SAT Stand For?

If you’re a high school student thinking about going to college after graduation, you know that you’ll need to take a couple of exams for your admittance into the school of your choice. One of those exams is the SAT.

SAT Study Guide | SAT Practice Test

What’s the Purpose of the SAT?

SAT Exam Secrets Study Guide
SAT Exam Secrets Study Guide

Many colleges around the country require scores from the SAT as part of your admissions process. The score you receive on this exam is a major component of your college application. The score that you receive on the SAT helps colleges determine who they will accept. The SAT measures how well test-takers can analyze and solve problems which are skills that are typically learned while in school and will be needed in college.

Now that you understand the purpose of the SAT a little more and why it’s important for your college application, let’s take a look at what the letters S-A-T really mean.

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What Does SAT Stand For

SAT Course

The SAT exam has been around for over 90 years. The first SAT exam was introduced in 1926 and at this time, SAT stood for “Scholastic Aptitude Test”. The SAT exam was an assessment that was designed to evaluate a student’s college-specific skills. However, word “aptitude” means “the natural ability to do something” and the SAT exam was not necessarily a measure of aptitude because you’ve had the opportunity to learn the subject rather than have a natural ability to already know it.

SAT Math

SAT Exam Flashcards Study System
SAT Exam Flashcards Study System

So, because the SAT wasn’t necessarily an aptitude test, the College Board changed the exam to Scholastic Assessment Test in 1993 and the test was divided into two parts: SAT 1: Reasoning Test and SAT 2: Subject Tests. After the name change, the SAT test was viewed to be more accurate by being labeled as an “assessment” because the SAT evaluated how you grew intellectually during your time in high school.

SAT Writing

In 1997, the College Board ran into another issue with the name for the SAT; they found that “assessment” is a synonym for the word “test” which turned the Scholastic Assessment Test into the Scholastic Test Test. So, because of this, the College Board changed the exam’s name again to SAT, with “SAT” no longer meaning anything. Now the “SAT” is just the SAT.

SAT Reading


What does the acronym SAT stand for?

The acronym SAT stands for Scholastic Assessment Test.

Has SAT always stood for Scholastic Assessment Test?

No. From the 20’s until the early 90’s, SAT stood for Scholastic Aptitude Test.

Why did the name change for the SAT?

The name Scholastic Aptitude Test was changed to Scholastic Assessment Test

How long as the SAT been in existence?

The SAT has been in existence for over 90 years.

Was the SAT test always one exam?

No. In 1993, the SAT exam was divided into two parts: SAT 1: Reasoning Test and SAT 2: Subject Tests.

When was the SAT renamed “SAT”?

The SAT was renamed “SAT” in 1997 when the College Board found that “assessment” was a synonym for the word “test”.

What does “SAT” mean now?

“SAT” does not mean anything now. The “SAT” is simply just “SAT”.

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Jay Willis

Jay Willis joined Mometrix as Vice President of Sales in 2009, and has developed several key strategic relationships that have enhanced the distribution of Mometrix products. With nearly 20 years of sales experience in the publishing industry, his dedication to providing the highest quality experience for customers, coupled with his sales and marketing expertise, has resulted in significant growth of the Institutional Sales division. Learn more