The Ivy Coach Daily

April 19, 2024

The New Digital SAT: Everything You Need to Know

Students walk across MIT's campus.

On March 9, 2024, The College Board officially began administering a new digital SAT test. The new version is administered via the Bluebook App, an online testing interface, and comes with several key changes to the testing experience. With many colleges bringing back mandatory testing requirements following several years of pandemic-related test-optional policies, understanding how the new SAT works is crucial for any student whose sights are set on elite universities. 

What You to Know About the New Digital SAT

What’s New in the New SAT?

The New digital SAT comes with a suite of changes that are meant to streamline the testing experience, making it accessible to a wider variety of students. These changes include:

This last change is perhaps the most important. After the student completes the first math and reading sections, the test calibrates the difficulty of the remaining two sections based on the student’s performance. This generates a unique test for each student, which curbs the possibility of cheating.

What Hasn’t Changed in the New SAT?

Several features have been carried over from the old SAT, including:

Is the New Digital SAT Format More Beneficial for Students?

The College Board released internal surveys that indicate that test takers prefer the new digital format, and while this data should be taken with a grain of salt, these new changes should be welcomed. The digital format allows for schools to have greater flexibility to administer the SAT at their own convenience, particularly on designated “SAT School Days,” which require fewer students to travel to third party locations during their free time to sit for the test.

For the last few years, many students expressed frustration that their hours spent doing online test preparation could not prepare them for the experience of sitting and filling out a physical testing booklet. Now, high schoolers, who already typically have impeccable digital literacy skills, will not have to switch gears on testing day. These changes have the potential to offset some of the psychological factors that spike nerves and throw off performance when students sit for the real thing.

How Should Students Prepare for the New SAT?

Updated versions of the SAT are available as digital practice tests on Khan Academy and the new Bluebook app, which allows students to practice on-the-go from their phones and tablets. However, as the SAT becomes more individualized, tutoring should similarly cater to individual strengths and weaknesses. Self-directed practice is best supplemented by consistent sessions with a tutoring professional in the months leading up to the testing date.

If you or your child is interested in receiving individualized SAT tutoring sessions with Ivy Coach’s Senior Tutor, Dr. Fran Bigman, take the first step by filling out our complimentary consultation form.

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