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How much does SAT matter?

  1. Jan 14, 2010 #1
    I am a high school student opting for university next year. My grades are all As. I am in the top ten of the school. I also am the President of the Theatre Club and the FOSS club. I am also active member of my schools Theoretical Physics Club. In addition to that i have started my own NGO along with my friends...

    However, my SAT scores are 1960 only!! I want to opt for nice colleges like MIT and Stanford for Engineering. But my friends tell me i cant make it cause my grades are too low.

    So can anyone give me some idea about can i make it to colleges like these or not..
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 14, 2010 #2
    SAT's aren't all that important, but they are used as a filter.

    a) What's your math/verbal/writing split? Most of these schools have a big discrepancy between the average math and verbal scores. See if you're in the ballpark for their math scores.
    b) I'm totally unclear on whether you're a junior or senior. If you're still a junior, shell out for kaplan/princton review/etc. and practice some more. Then take them again.
    c) If you're a senior, talk to the college adviser at your school. They usually have a baseline for where you can get in.
    d) If you're a senior, your apps are due soon anyway/already due. Just apply to your dream schools and make sure to apply to some safeties. Worse case, you won't make it into a reach. It really won't kill you.
  4. Jan 14, 2010 #3
    1960 is very low for anyone that wants to get into a STEM career. I suggest reviewing and then retaking the SAT.
    Are you Hispanic or African American?
  5. Jan 14, 2010 #4
    First let me say that most schools dont consider the writing protion because they feel that there is not yet enough data to use the score effectively.

    Here are the percentiles for scores:

    Like Zubin, I would suggest retaking it if you want to go to MIT or Stanford or some other upper tier university. But unlike Zubin I would not say that 1960 is very low for anyone that wants to get into a STEM career. Maybe low for the likes of MIT or Stanford, but not low in general.
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 24, 2017
  6. Jan 14, 2010 #5
    At MIT, I was told by someone in the know that I needed a 750 Math to even have a shot at getting, there were talking about my specific situation though, and this was 3 years ago, so I'd take that information with a grain of salt.
  7. Jan 14, 2010 #6
    As far as admission into those schools, I don't know. Who cares. You are who you are. You seem to have high expectations for yourself. If you can derive complex mathematical relationships in your sleep, people will notice. If not, chill out.
  8. Jan 15, 2010 #7
    Actually, grades are just a filter too, just like SAT. Grades and SAT scores can keep you out of a top school, but they can't get you in.
  9. Jan 17, 2010 #8
    Yeah...SAT wouldn't be used if there weren't too many students competing for the same spot in the university.
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