What Are Considered Good SAT Scores for Colleges? How Should Your Students Set a SAT Goal Score.

The overall process of taking the SAT test after putting in consistent efforts is indeed time consuming. At this point your students might be wondering what is a good SAT score for entry into the college of their choice. A good SAT score typically ranges from 1200-1400+, but this depends on several factors such as the college, competitiveness and the grade of the student taking the test.

What is a good SAT score for colleges?

The SAT- Scholastic Aptitude Test is a highly competitive test used for college admission in the U.S.. Students have a better chance of getting into the college of their choice by getting both a high GPA and SAT score. But what is a good SAT score?

The top ranked colleges typically will select the candidates who earned the highest SAT scores (along with other factors).

According to this, the 25th percentile score denotes 25% of the students who scored below threshold, 75th percentile denotes that 75% of the students are above or on the threshold. 50 percentile means 50% are at the median score.

The Highest SAT score you can earn is 1600. But 1400 is generally considered as a competitive score to get entry to any college. To apply for any of the top 30 U.S. universities, you must have a score above the median 50% range.  If you want to apply to Harvard, your SAT score should be ranging between 1470-1570. 

For instance, to know what score is good, your student must prioritize the colleges they plan to apply for. They must then consider the SAT score policy of each college by listing them and determining the median SAT score i.e: the 50% of the students admitted over the past year. They will then have a good gauge as to what scores are required at their schools of choice.

How much do colleges care about SAT scores?

The SAT score is one essential factor considered by colleges to evaluate the candidate’s performance and capabilities for admission. When a student applies for the college, they are evaluated based on their academic achievements and extra-curricular activities. The SAT is one factor that goes into the overall decision. Basically having a high SAT score represents that your students have the potential to stand out, even if their GPA wasn’t as high as it could have been.

Other factors evaluated in their application are their additional skills, unique essay, leadership, involvement and how well they might fit in at the college.

How important is a good SAT score?

Students should also apply for scholarships. Various colleges provide Merit Scholarships for students to support them financially. They should research many Merit Scholarships which have a minimum requirement and know what SAT score is required to be eligible. The guaranteed scholarships are also given to students after getting accepted by the college for a certain range of SAT scores.

How to Set a SAT Goal Score?

Now that they know what importance their SAT score holds, there are various ways to boost their scores. They must prepare well by making use of training, online courses, private tutoring, and self-study options. 

So, if it’s better to set a goal score before they start preparing. What should that score be?

A good score for every college varies. With high competitiveness between the students, they must ideally set a SAT score goal to earn a good score and get into the college of your choice. One simple method is detailed here,

  • Tabulate the colleges that they want to apply to in a prioritized order. Then determine the 25th /75th percentile SAT scores. This helps them plan on the school and acceptance rate of candidates.
  • They must find the SAT score information of those colleges online by looking for the previous year’s statistics. Then record the 25th and 75th percentile scores in the tables.
  • Using the information they collected, they can now set a target to score.


Generally, a good SAT target score for the colleges on their list is those who score in the 75th percentile or more. So preparing better can help them earn a score higher than the average and get into their college of choice.