What is the Stanford Achievement Test (SAT10)?

What is the Stanford Achievement Test (SAT10)?

By | 2018-01-05T12:56:50+00:00 January 5th, 2018|Independent School Admissions|0 Comments

The Stanford Achievement Test (SAT10) is a standardized test designed by Pearson to measure the academic progress of students from kindergarten to grade 12. It is also used as an admissions test at a few schools, such as Immaculate Heart (middle school only). There is a different test for each grade-level to measure the appropriate standards. Paper and online versions are available, and sections do not have an official time limit.

Subjects and Format

The SAT10 includes several subtests, which vary by grade-level and test format (Complete or Abbreviated). There are 20-48 traditional multiple-choice questions per subtest, depending on the subject and test form.

According to Pearson, all test-takers can likely expect:

  • Reading Vocabulary
  • Reading Comprehension: Passages are literary, informational, and functional; questions address initial understanding, interpretation, critical analysis, and reading strategies.
  • Mathematics Problem Solving and Procedures: Number sense and operations; patterns relationships and algebra; geometry and measurement; and data, statistics, and probability. Questions also evaluate processes in computation and representation; estimation; mathematical connections; and reasoning and problem solving.
  • Language: Language mechanics: capitalization, punctuation, and usage; sentence structure; writing skills: clarity, organization, etc.
  • Spelling: Identifying commonly misspelled words and their correct spelling

The Complete Battery also includes a Listening section for grades K-9, and the Comprehensive Language test includes writing tasks. In addition, there are optional subtests for Environment, Science, and Social Science (which are likely not included when it’s used as an admissions test).


Since the SAT10 is a norm-referenced test, schools will likely look at the percentile rank and stanine scores, both of which compare the student with others across the country. Pearson has four normed groups available for comparison: National, Catholic, Private, and Local. Score reports can also show whether grade-level achievement is “Low,” “Medium,” or “High” for a given student on each subtest. In addition, students can receive a Lexile score that reflects their reading level.


The SAT10 is based on national and state grade-level standards, so the best way to prepare is to review the appropriate reading, math, and language skills and concepts. It might be helpful to brush up on content taught during the second half of the previous school year, since that is fair game for the test. In addition, any standards that the teacher didn’t quite get to, or the student didn’t quite master, might also be on the test. Students should also review general test-taking strategies, such as using process of elimination and properly filling out a bubble sheet. The test is designed to be untimed, so pacing should not be a concern.

The role that standardized tests such as the SAT10 should play in education is hotly debated, but a test date does provide a good opportunity to review content and skills student has learned throughout the years. Students who take time to review previously learned standards and brush up on any weaknesses will see benefits that transcend the test itself. Private tutoring is an excellent way to provide this comprehensive review, so contact LA Tutors if you’d like help!


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