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SAT Essay Tips and Grading

The SAT essay is an optional component of the SAT that measures a student’s ability to analyze and evaluate an argument. This article will explore some tips for writing a successful SAT essay and how the essay is graded.

Tips for Writing a Successful SAT Essay

  1. Read the prompt carefully. The SAT essay prompt presents a statement or claim and asks students to analyze and evaluate it. It is essential to read the prompt carefully and ensure you understand what is being asked of you.
  2. Take a clear position. When writing the essay, taking a clear position on the issue presented in the prompt is vital. This position should be stated clearly in the thesis statement and supported throughout the essay.
  3. Use specific evidence. You must use clear evidence from the prompt or outside sources to support your position. This evidence should be cited and analyzed to show how it supports your position.
  4. Organize your essay. A well-organized essay is easier to read and understand. The essay should have a clear introduction, body paragraphs supporting your position, and a conclusion summarizing your argument.
  5. Use proper grammar and punctuation. The essay should be well-written and free of grammatical and punctuation errors. This shows that you have a good command of the English language and can effectively communicate your ideas.

Grading of the SAT Essay

The SAT essay is graded on a scale of 1-4 in three categories: Reading, Analysis, and Writing. Two different graders score each type for six scores. The scores are then added together to create a 2-8. Then all three scores are added together to give a score from 6 to 24.

Here is a breakdown of the scoring categories:

  • Reading: This category measures how well you understand the prompt and its argument. It also measures your ability to use evidence from the prompt to support your position.
  • Analysis: This category measures how well you analyze the idea presented in the prompt. It also measures your ability to identify and explain the author’s use of rhetorical devices.
  • Writing: This category measures how well you write the essay. It includes factors such as the clarity of your thesis statement, the organization of your essay, and the quality of your writing.

Example Grading of the SAT Essay

Here is an example of how the SAT essay is graded:

Student A receives the following

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scores from the two graders in each category:

  • Reading: Grader 1 – 3, Grader 2 – 4
  • Analysis: Grader 1 – 3, Grader 2 – 3
  • Writing: Grader 1 – 4, Grader 2 – 4

The final score is calculated by adding the two scores for each category together and then adding those sums together:

  • Reading: (3 + 4) = 7
  • Analysis: (3 + 3) = 6
  • Writing: (4 + 4) = 8

Final score: (7 + 6 + 8) = 21

Student A receives a final score of 21 out of 24.

Final Thoughts

The SAT essay is an optional component of the SAT that measures a student’s ability to analyze and evaluate an argument. Students can improve their chances of achieving a high score by following these tips for writing a successful SAT essay and understanding how it is graded. Remember to read the prompt carefully, take a clear position, use specific evidence, organize your essay, and use proper grammar and punctuation. Students can successfully navigate the SAT essay and achieve their academic goals with practice and preparation.

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