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The SAT Essay: What to expect

Video transcript

the SAT consists of tests in reading writing and language and math plus an optional essay this video focuses on the essay test the SAT essay provides you with a great opportunity to showcase your reading analysis and writing skills which are fundamental to demonstrating college and career readiness to complete the section you'll have 50 minutes to read a passage and write an essay analyzing how the author built his or her argument here's an example of an essay prompt in this example you are asked to explain how Peter s Goodman persuades his audience that news organizations should increase the amount of foreign news coverage they provide to people in the United States you would analyze how Goodman uses one or more of the features listed in the Box evidence reasoning stylistic elements or features of your own choice to strengthen the logic of his argument make sure your analysis focuses on the most relevant features of the passage the essay task will always be the same while the passage will vary it will always be a piece in which the author is making a claim and trying to persuade the audience to agree with a specific position don't worry about being familiar with the subject the passage will always be about a general topic and will not require you to bring any prior knowledge to the task remember don't summarize the information in the passage discuss how the author constructs the argument focus on how the author uses evidence reasoning and other techniques to make the writing convincing persuasive and powerful when you receive your SAT scores you will receive three scores for the SAT essay each on a total scale of two to eight these scores will remain separate and will not be combined with your reading or writing and language test scores the scores you receive on the SAT essay will give you important feedback about your strengths in reading how well you understood the passage analysis how well you analyzed the author's argument and writing how well you structured your response your scores will also help you see what you need to work on you're in the right place to learn more about the SAT essay test right here on Khan Academy so let's get started with some free hands-on practice