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SAT Subject Tests: What happened to the SAT II?

The SAT Subject Tests (formerly SAT II: Subject Tests) are one-hour tests that measure your knowledge in particular subject areas and your ability to apply that knowledge. The most commonly taken exam is Math—usually taken at the end of the junior year. Others exams are U.S. History, Literature, and various Foreign Languages and Sciences. Each test is one hour long, and you may take up to three tests in one day. You cannot take the SAT Reasoning Test (the standard SAT) on the same day as the SAT subject tests.

Why should I take the SAT Subject Tests?

Some top-tier schools such as Yale, Harvard, Dartmouth, Duke and others require the submission of at least 2 SAT Subject test scores. Many other competitive colleges use the Subject Tests to aid in admissions decisions, for course level selection and for course placement.

How can we help?

Applerouth Tutoring Service provides focused review for almost all SAT Subject Tests. Each individual test prep course comes with a real SAT Subject Test diagnostic exam and corresponding course materials. We suggest a minimum of 8 hours split into 2-hour lessons, but we can customize a course to fit your individual needs. Contact us for more information and to sign up.

When Should You Take the Subject Tests?

Most students take the tests at the end of their junior year or the beginning of their senior year. However, it’s best to take the tests as soon as possible after you have completed the highest level of coursework for that area. If you took Honors Chemistry sophomore year, take the SAT Subject Test in Chemsitry at the end of your sophomore year. The material will be fresh. However, if you plan on taking AP Chemistry, wait until you have completed that course to take the SAT Subject test.  It’s also best to take foreign language tests after completing at least two years of coursework. Do not fear a low score. The college board offers Score Choice for the subject tests, too. If you take an exam at the end of sophomore year and are not happy with the results, you don’t have to send the score to a school.

Should I take the Math Level I or II?

You only need to take one of the two exams. The Math II is a much more difficult test, but the scoring is much more generous. Consider taking the Math II if you are a very strong math student or if you are considering courses of study like engineering, the sciences or advanced math. Ideally, you would take Math II after finishing an honors pre-calculus course.


Applerouth is a trusted test prep and tutoring resource. We combine the science of learning with a thoughtful, student-focused approach to help our clients succeed. Call or email us today at 202-558-5644 or info@applerouth.com.