The Secondary School Admission Test (SSAT) is an admissions test required for entry to most independent and private elementary, middle, and high schools in the US.

The SSAT is offered in three levels: Elementary Level for students in grades 3 – 4; Middle Level for students in grades 5 – 7; and Upper Level for students in grades 8 – 11.

It is a paper-and-pencil test comprising of four main sections: Writing Sample, Verbal, Reading Comprehension, and Quantitative (Mathematics). Each section assesses the following abilites

Section I: Writing

Organisation and expression of ideas
Section II: Quantitative

Problem solving using arithmetic, elementary algebra, geometry, and other concepts.
Section III: Reading Comprehension

Recognising central ideas; identifying details; inference and deduction; determining author’s purpose, attitude, and tone; understanding and evaluation of arguments.
Section IV: Verbal

Vocabulary; identification of synonyms and interpretation of analogies.
Writing Sample1 task from a choice of 2 prompts25 minutesUnscored
Quantitative 125 multiple choice30 minutes500 - 800 (Upper Level)

440 - 710 (Middle Level)
Quantitative 225 multiple choice30 minutes
Reading40 multiple choice40 minutes500 - 800 (Upper Level)

440 - 710 (Middle Level)
Verbal60 multiple choice30 minutes500 - 800 (Upper Level)

440 - 710 (Middle Level)
Experimental16 multiple choice15 minutesUnscored
Total3 hours 5 minutes

Including breaks
1500 - 2400 (Upper Level)

1320 - 2130 (MIddle Level)


Which schools require the SSAT?

Most US independent and private elementary, middle, and high schools require the SSAT. The following is a non-exhaustive list of private schools in the US:
Choate Rosemary Hall
Dalton School
Deerfield Academy
Groton School
Milton Academy
Phillips Exeter Academy
The Hotchkiss School

What is a good SSAT score?

Generally speaking, a competitive SSAT score is above 2200 for the Upper Level, and above 1900 for the Middle Level.

How long is my SSAT score valid for?

SSAT scores are valid only for the testing season.

How often can I sit for the SSAT?

You may sit for the SSAT any number of times.

When is the SSAT held?

For the 2019 – 2020 testing year, the SSAT is held once each month between October 2019 to June 2020, except in May 2020.

When will my results be available?

SSAT scores are typically available within 2 weeks of the test sitting.


ssat Recent Acceptances

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