Secondary School Admission Test (SSAT) is a standardized test in United States administered by Secondary School Admission Test Board (SSATB). This test is conducted at two levels-lower and Upper. In USA, school education is provided by diverse institutions including public schools, private schools and home schools. The institutions remarkably differ in standards, curriculum and coursework. Therefore, SSAT helps in evaluating secondary school students at national level irrespective of their backgrounds. This test is useful in getting admission to a reputed school for further education.
The upper level of test is administered for students in grades 8, 9, 10 and 11. The lower level of test is conducted for students in grades 5, 6 and 7.
This test examines quantitative, verbal, reading and writing skills. There are total five sections- two of quantitative and one each of reading, writing and verbal skills. The quantitative section is based on school algebra and arithmetic operations. The reading section tests reading comprehension and interpretation. The verbal section has questions on analogies and synonyms. The writing section consists of essay writing on a given topic.
In the quantitative sections, there are 25 multiple choice questions in each which are to be solved in 30 minutes. The content for these sections comes from school level mathematics and quantitative reasoning. There are 7 passages in the reading section followed by a total of 40 related questions. A time of 40 minutes is allotted to this section. These questions are related to identification of an information or idea from given text, interpretation of passages, generalization and drawing conclusions. The verbal section consists of 30 questions related to analogies and 30 to synonyms and time given to complete this section is 30 minutes. In the writing section, a topic related to history, current affairs, literature or a general issue is given, which has to be elaborated and presented logically by the examinee. The time allotted for the writing section is 25 minutes.
In lower level SSAT, scaled scores in range of 440 to 710 are awarded in reading, verbal and quantitative sections. The total score is sum of scores in three skills and ranges from 1320 to 2130. In upper level SSAT, scaled scores in range of 500 to 800 are given to reading, verbal and quantitative sections each. The total score is sum of scores in three skills ranging from 1500 to 2400. In addition to individual scores and total score, percentage in range from 1 to 99, SSAT percentile rank, estimated percentile rank are also mentioned in test results. SSAT percentile rank is calculated considering examinees from past three years of same gender and grade. An estimation of possible 12th grade SAT score is also reported for students in grades 7 to 10.
The test scores are reported for free to maximum two recipients. It can be reported to a school and other to candidate’s parents. The scores are not reported directly to students through any means.
This test is scheduled in three ways- national test, flex test and regional flex test. For national test, there are fixed 8 test dates in a year. The students can appear in all or any of the tests without any restriction. Flex test refers to a test date other than national test dates which can be chosen by an individual or group of individuals for taking this test. Regional flex test also refers to a flexible test date other than 8 national test dates, which is decided by local test administrator. An applicant can avail a flex or regional flex test date only once in a year. The registration for this test can be done online at the official website of SSAT or by phone or fax.
The exam fee for SSAT is $116. The fee for international testing is $225. There are additional charges for late registration, standby registration, change of test location, change of test date, Email score reporting to home and FedEx score reporting to home.