Average SAT Essay Score

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The College Board doesn’t release essay scores:

When I sat down to write this post, I discovered something interesting: the College Board doesn’t actually release an average SAT essay score.

They do, however, release an average composite Writing score for the nation, which includes the SAT essay score. The average Writing score is approximately 510, though it varies from year to year.

Now here’s the good news – as a professional SAT tutor, I’ve got a pretty good idea of the average SAT essay score.

My estimate of the average SAT essay score:

Based on my professional tutoring experience (I’ve worked with over 100 students on SAT prep), the average SAT essay score is right in the middle! The essay is scored on a 2-12 scale, and I’m going to estimate that the average SAT essay score is between a 6 and a 8.

I see a lot of scores in that range, a few that are a 4 or 5, a decent number that are a 9 or a 10, and a very, very few that score an 11 or a perfect 12.

Scores below 4 are pretty rare if you use a good basic essay structure and stay on topic.

SAT Essay books that will improve your score:

Want to get a better-than-average SAT essay score or just to improve your SAT essay writing in general?

I took everything I knew about the SAT essay and put it all into one book, which you can obtain here: Write the Best SAT Essay of Your Life!

Also take a look at my awesome list of SAT Essay Evidence, a special report that can cut down on your workload and stress while increasing your SAT essay score!


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3 Responses to What is the average SAT essay score?

  1. little john says:

    I followed all your advice. I ended up getting a 9 on the essay. I got 600 on writing section. Not what I wanted at all. I hoped for 700 or more. Even worse was the reading section, in which I got a humiliating 440. The math however I was very confident. I hoped for 800. But I got a 540 again. The same I got in the Psat. why? why is this happening to me always. The chineese kid in my class got 2100 on the first try.

    • Christian says:

      9 on the essay is not bad. more practice, you can get an 11 or 12.

      Sounds to me like you’re doing too much “hoping” and “being confident.” That stuff doesn’t work on the SAT.

      The 7 keys to the SAT are: humility. knowledge. practice. discipline. reading. vocabulary. speed.

      Speed comes last. develop the other 6 first.

      Recommended books: check out my BOOKSTORE and get the GRAMMAR CRAMMER and the MATH LEVEL 1 and 2 books. For Vocab, go to Amazon for Larry Krieger’s Essential 500 Vocab words.

      Don’t wait. Do this today and use them every day, all summer.

      Practice in the blue book every day and fix your wrong answers. Do 2 sections a day: 1 math, 1 writing; then 1 writing, 1 reading; then one 1 reading, one math; then 1 math, one essay. FIX your mistakes. You HAVE to understand why you got it wrong in order to get it right next time. No complaining about the test writers being wrong. They’re not wrong.

      Humility. knowledge. practice. discipline. reading. vocabulary. speed.

      Learn the vocab words you don’t know, the same day you find them.

      Rinse and repeat.

      Do these things basically every day (maybe 90 minutes per day), take the test again in October, and see what happens.

      Finally, FORGET about what “the other guy” is doing. Just forget it and never think about it. Welcome to real life. It’s extremely unfair. Focus on building yourself up. No one else can do it for you, and no one wants to.

      It’s on you. Summer is enough time to improve hundreds and hundreds of points. If you work. If you admit how far there is to go.

      How bad do you want it?

  2. little john says:

    please feel free to contact me through me email.

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