Upper Level SSAT®: About the Test

Tens of thousands of students take the Upper Level SSAT every year. Will you be one of them? Find out more about the test below, and check out our complete set of Upper Level SSAT lessons and practices tests here.

Who takes the Upper Level SSAT and why?

Students in grades 8 through 11 take the Upper Level Secondary School Admission Test (SSAT). It is a private school admission test.

How long is the Upper Level SSAT?

The test takes three hours and five minutes in total. There are six sections, with two short breaks. Here’s a complete breakdown of the test structure:

Writing Sample25 minutesChoose 1 of 2 prompts
Break5 minutes
Quantitative (Math)30 minutes25 questions
Reading40 minutes40 questions
Break10 minutes
Verbal30 minutes60 questions
Quantitative (Math)30 minutes25 questions
Experimental15 minutes16 questions
What types of questions are on the Upper Level SSAT?

The Verbal, Reading Comprehension, and Quantitative (Math) sections are multiple choice. Each question has five answer choices. For the Writing sample, you may choose one of two prompts.

How is the Upper Level SSAT graded?

You will receive a scaled score ranging from 500 to 800. This is based on a raw score, which is calculated as follows: You receive one point for each correct answer. A quarter of a point is deducted for each incorrect answer. Unanswered questions do not affect the raw score. (This means that it is better not to answer a question than to answer it incorrectly.) The Writing section is ungraded, though your response will be sent to school admission departments along with your test scores.

What should you bring on testing day?

You should bring your own wooden #2 pencils with erasers. You may not bring a calculator or any other tool.

Check out all of our free Upper Level SSAT resources here.

SSAT® is a registered trademark of the Secondary School Admission Test Board.