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The Middle and Upper Levels

The SSAT is a multiple-choice test that consists of verbal, quantitative (math), and reading comprehension sections, plus an unscored writing sample. The Middle Level SSAT is for students currently in grades 5-7; the Upper Level SSAT is for students currently in grades 8 and above.  The Middle and Upper Level SSATs share the same format and timing, and both provide admission officers with an idea of your academic ability and "fit" in their schools.

The best way to ensure that you perform as well as you possibly can on the SSAT is to familiarize yourself with the test. Familiarity with the format of the test and review of practice questions will make your test-taking experience easier. You’ll feel more comfortable with the test and be able to anticipate the types of questions you’ll encounter.

For more information on specific sections and types of items on the SSAT, visit the Test Prep section.

​​​​​​​​​Cover At A GlanceClick to download the Middle and Upper Level 2015-2016 SSAT At A Glance br​ochure

Test Format


Number of Questions

Time Allotted To Administer
Each Section

Writing Sample


  25 minutes


5 minutes

Section 1 (Quantitative)


  30 minutes

Section 2 (Reading)


  40 minutes


10 minutes

Section 3 (Verbal)


  30 minutes

Section 4 (Quantitative)


  30 minutes

Section 5 (Experimental)


  15 minutes



  3 hours, 5 minutes

Of the 167 items including the writing sample, only 150 questions are scored.