About the SSAT:
Testing Details

Online & Printed Practice

Learn more about scores, format, and accommodations across all testing options.

Download Datasheet

About the SSAT

The SSAT is a standardized test focused on verbal, math, and reading skills. Students have multiple ways throughout the year to take the SSAT.

Find Your Testing OptionsRegister Now

What’s on the SSAT? 

  • Quantitative (Math): One section of 30 questions composed of math computation.
  • Verbal: One section of 30 vocabulary and analogy questions.
  • Reading: One section of 28 questions based on reading passages.
  • Writing Sample: There is one writing prompt. The writing sample is not scored, but schools use it to assess writing skills.
  • Experimental: One section of mixed content questions (verbal, reading, and math). This section does not count toward reported scores.
Learn More

Middle/Upper Level SSAT Test Breakdown

Total duration of 3 hours, 10 minutes.

Writing Sample
Timing
25 minutes
Break
Timing
10 minutes
Section 1
Quantitative
Timing
30 minutes
Section 2
Reading
Timing
40 minutes
Break
Timing
10 minutes
Section 3
Verbal
Timing
30 minutes
Section 4
Quantitative
Timing
30 minutes
Section 5
Experimental
Timing
15 minutes
Middle Level is for students in grades 5–7.  Upper Level is for students in grades 8–11.

Elementary Level SSAT Test Breakdown

A total of 104-106 questions, with a duration of 2 hours, 5 minutes.

Section 1
Quantitative/Math
Number of Questions
30
Timing
30 minutes
Section 2
Verbal
Number of Questions
30
Timing
20 minutes
Break
15 minutes
Section 3
Reading
Number of Questions
28
Timing
30 minutes
Writing Sample
Number of Questions
1 prompt
Timing
15 minutes
Experimental Section
Number of Questions
Varies from 15-17
Timing
15 minutes
Elementary Level is for students in grades 3–4.

The SSAT has proven to be an exceptionally valid indicator of first-year student success.

70,000+ students take the SSAT each year.

EMA testing experts continually monitor the SSAT to ensure it remains:

Relevant

The SSAT is written and reviewed by independent school educators and content and testing experts. Every question goes through a rigorous standardized process of validation. 

Reliable

SSAT’s scaled score reliability is higher than .90 (out of a possible 1.0) for both the verbal and quantitative sections and is approaching .90 for the reading section.

Accessible

EMA ensures that test takers with disabilities receive reasonable accommodations when taking the SSAT. 

Secure

The processes and procedures for the SSAT’s administration are the same for every student at test sites around the world. 

Admission Process Webinars

We offer a number of free webinars for families to assist them during the admissions process and provide more information about the SSAT, the Standard Application Online, and the Character Skills Snapshot.

View Webinars

Preparing for the Test

We offer SSAT Practice Online and The Official Guide to the SSAT​.

Learn More
Questions about SSAT test options, scores and more?