Key Takeaways

  • Some students can get extended time for SAT exam if they have a documented disability such as a learning disorder or ADHD. This helps them perform better by giving them more time to process questions.
  • To apply for extended time, students must show proof of their disability with documents like doctor’s reports and must work with their school’s SSD coordinator to fill out an application.
  • There are different options for extended time on the SAT, including 50% extra time, double time, and in rare cases, 100% additional time, depending on the student’s needs. Each option aims to help students do their best without rushing.
  • Students who get approval for extended time can also enjoy longer breaks between test sections which helps reduce stress and keeps them focused throughout the exam. With help, you may even qualify for multi-day testing.
  • Preparing for the SAT with accommodations involves gathering necessary documentation, applying early through the College Board, practicing under similar testing conditions at home, and being well-rested and prepared on test day.

Preparing for the SAT can be a stressful time for many students. Trying to perform at your best within a set time can feel especially hard if you have learning challenges or require more time to process information.

Did you know that some students can get extra time on this big test? This special allowance aims to give everyone an equal chance to show their true skills and knowledge.

Our blog post today focuses on Extended Time accommodations for the SAT exam. We will explore who is eligible, how you apply, and what options exist for getting more time during your testing sessions.

If you or someone you know is having trouble with timed tests, keep reading! Our guide might just be the help you need.

What is Extended Time on the SAT?

Extended time on the SAT is extra minutes given to some students during their exam. To get this, you must show you really need it because of a learning or health challenge.


extended time for SAT - photo of a high school student sitting with a therapist

To get extra time on the SAT, students must show they have a documented disability. This includes problems with learning or special needs that make taking timed tests difficult for them.

Documents need to clearly explain why a student needs more time. These can include reports from doctors or psychologists who understand the student’s challenges.

Public school students with these documents can also get extra help during the exam, not just more time. This makes sure all students have a fair chance when taking this important test for college admissions.

How to Apply for Extended Time

Applying for extended time on the SAT is a step many students take. It helps them perform better by giving them the extra time they need. Here is how you can apply for this accommodation:

  1. First, check if you are eligible. You must have a documented disability that affects your ability to take exams under regular time limits. This could be a learning disorder, ADHD, or any condition covered under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act.
  2. Gather your documents. You’ll need reports and tests that show your disability and why you need more time on tests. Make sure these documents clearly detail your situation and needs.
  3. Talk to your school’s SSD coordinator. Every school has an SSD (Services for Students with Disabilities) coordinator who handles requests for SAT accommodations. They will guide you through the process.
  4. Complete the SSD Online application with your coordinator’s help. This form asks about your disability and the kind of help you need, like extended time or extra breaks.
  5. Submit proof of your disability along with the application. This includes any tests, medical records, or individualized education plans that explain why you need more testing time.
  6. Wait for approval from the College Board. Remember, it takes about seven weeks to get a response, so apply early.
  7. After getting approval, pick a test date that gives you enough time to prepare while considering the College Board’s processing time.
  8. Prepare for the SAT knowing you will have the accommodations needed to do your best.

By taking these steps carefully and early, you can secure the extended time needed for your SAT exam.

Length of the SAT with Extended Time

Taking the SAT with extended time changes its length. If a student doesn’t choose the optional essay, they have 4 hours and 30 minutes to complete it. With the essay, this extends to 5 hours and 45 minutes.

This extra time can help students do their best on every part of the test.

Students who get extra time also enjoy longer breaks between sections. They get twice as much break time as usual and can add more pauses if needed. This helps them stay focused and reduces stress during the long testing process.

Options for Extended Time on the SAT

Students taking the SAT have different options for extra time to finish their tests. These choices help students do their best, whether they need a little more time or double the usual amount.

50% Extended Time

Students with learning disorders like ADHD or those who have an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) can get 50% extra time on the SAT. This helps them read through questions slowly and think about their answers more carefully.

They also get longer breaks, making the test less stressful.

This accommodation helps with the reading section and all parts of the SAT, including math and writing. Having that extra half-time means students can take their time to complete tasks without feeling rushed.

It makes a big difference in how well they do on the test.

Time and a Half

For students approved for extended time on the SAT, time and a half is a key option. This means they get 50% more time to work on each section of the test. It helps those who need extra minutes to read through questions or think about their answers.

The College Board makes sure every student has enough time to show what they know.

These students must use all the given time. They can’t choose to finish early or skip sections. This rule ensures that everyone uses their extra time wisely, focusing on doing their best without rushing.

Whether tackling math problems, reading passages, or crafting essays for college admissions, this accommodation supports fairness in standardized exams.

Double Time

Double time gives students two times the usual period for each part of the SAT. This means if a section usually takes 60 minutes, now it takes 120 minutes. Students who get double time often take their tests over two days at their school.

This way, they have plenty of time to work through questions without rushing.

Some learners might even qualify for 150% extra time on top of double time, though this is rare. Offering various options like double time helps make sure all students can do their best on these crucial college admissions exams, regardless of their unique needs or challenges.

150% Additional Time

Students who get 150% additional time on the SAT have much more time to work through each question. This option is great for those with significant needs, like severe processing speed issues or a major seizure disorder.

They can use this extra time across all parts of the test, including reading passages, solving math problems, and writing essays.

Getting approved for this accommodation involves showing that a student really needs it. A clear need might come from having specific learning disorders or ADHD symptoms that severely impact test-taking abilities.

The College Board reviews requests for extended time through special education services. Students and their families should submit thorough documentation showing how their disability affects taking standardized tests like the SAT Subject Tests and AP exams as part of the college admissions process. The College Board often denies such requests and professional consultation can make a difference!

The Process of Obtaining Extended Time on the SAT

Getting extra time on the SAT starts with knowing what papers to show. You must keep track of deadlines and get ready for different parts of the test.

Documentation Guidelines

To get extra time on the SAT, you need to show that you have a disability that makes testing hard for you. This involves providing clear proof of your disability and how it affects your test-taking.

For instance, if you need double time for the reading section because of a reading disorder, make sure this is clearly recommended in your documentation.

Make sure everything is official and signed by someone qualified to assess your condition, such as a doctor or psychologist.

Remember to check the deadlines for submitting these documents to the College Board. They need time to review your request before test day.

Following these steps carefully increases your chances of getting the extra time you need to do well on the SAT.

Know Your Dates and Deadlines

Getting your dates and deadlines right is key when applying for extended time on the SAT. This timeline ensures your request gets processed on time.

  • Check the College Board’s website for application deadlines. They set specific dates by which you need to apply for accommodations.
  • Start your application early. The review process can take up to seven weeks.
  • Mark your calendar with the test registration deadline. It’s different from the accommodations request deadline.
  • Submit all required paperwork well before the due date. This includes documentation of a disability under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.
  • After submitting, watch for any communication from the College Board. They might ask for more information.
  • Once approved, note that your accommodations stay in place until one year after you graduate high school. You won’t need to reapply for each test.

Careful planning and following these steps will help ensure you get the extra time you need on exam day. If you are denied an accommodation and believe you truly qualify, contact The Hillside Monitor for help!

Accommodations for Different Test Sections

Students with disabilities might need special help during the SAT. The test offers different kinds of help, depending on what students need.

  • If a student has trouble with reading, they get more time for all parts of the test. Every section involves reading, so extra time applies to everything.
  • For the math section, some students can use a calculator or other tools throughout the whole part, not just in specific spots.
  • During the writing and language sections, those who have extended time can use it fully. This helps them understand and answer questions better.
  • If the essay section is included, students approved for extended time have more minutes to plan, write, and review their essays.
  • Students who find it hard to mark answers in the usual way might get to use assistive technology or have someone else mark answers for them.

This support makes sure every student can show their true skills on the SAT.

Before Test Day

Getting ready before test day is key. It ensures you’re set for success.

  1. Check your test center location and time. Make sure you know where you are going and when to be there.
  2. Gather all needed items. You will need your admission ticket, a photo ID, number 2 pencils, an eraser, and an approved calculator.
  3. Review the SAT rules online. Knowing what to expect can calm nerves.
  4. Plan your trip to the testing center. Decide how you’ll get there and what time you need to leave.
  5. Prepare snacks and water for breaks. Students with extended time get extra breaks, so bring snacks to keep your energy up.
  6. Get a good night’s sleep the night before. Rest helps your brain work best.
  7. Set multiple alarms for the morning of the test. You don’t want to be late.

These steps help students feel ready and less stressed on the big day.

On Test Day

Test day can bring nerves and excitement. Here’s how to make the most of it with your SAT extended-time accommodation.

  1. Arrive early at the testing center. This gives you time to relax and find your room without rushing.
  2. Bring all needed items. Make sure you have your admission ticket, photo ID, pencils, eraser, and an approved calculator.
  3. Listen carefully to all instructions from the test leader. They will guide you on how to start and when breaks happen.
  4. Use extra breaks wisely. Students with extended time get more breaks, so eat snacks and drink water to stay sharp.
  5. Stay in your seat if you finish early within a section. You must wait until the section ends before taking a break or moving on.
  6. Focus on your own test. With extra time, resist looking around or worrying about how others are doing.
  7. Pace yourself through each section of the SAT using the entire time given to avoid rushing at the end.
  8. If you feel stressed during one section of the exam, take deep breaths and use relaxation techniques to regain focus.

Following these steps helps ensure that on test day, you fully utilize your extended time accommodation and perform your best on the SAT.

Accommodations for Students with Disabilities

Students with disabilities get special help on the SAT. These aids include more time and different ways to take the test.

Learning Disorders and ADHD

Kids with ADHD or other learning challenges might find tests like the SAT really tough. They often need more time to read through questions and think about their answers. This is because their brains process information in a different way, making regular test times not enough for them.

Luckily, these students can get extra time on the SAT if they properly document their condition and make a good case for themselves.

Getting this extra time involves a few steps. First, you must show proof of your ADHD or learning challenge through medical documents. These papers should explain how your condition affects your ability to take tests under normal conditions.

Once you’ve got all your documentation ready, you can apply for extended time accommodations on the SAT. This can be a big help in leveling the playing field and giving everyone a fair shot at doing well on the exam.

Academic Achievement Tests

Academic tests measure how much students have learned in school. They check whether a student knows enough to move to the next level of education. These tests can be tough for students with disabilities.

The law says they should get help so they can do their best on these exams.

One way to help is to give more time on standardized tests like the SAT. For example, if a test usually takes three hours, a student might get four and a half hours instead. To get this extra time, there are steps that must be followed.

First, you need proof of your disability from a doctor or another expert. Then, you apply for extended time through the official SAT website before certain dates. Each type of disability might need different kinds of help during the test.

Options for Accommodations

Getting extra time on the SAT can make a big difference. There are various ways students with disabilities can get help during the test. Here are some key options:

  1. More Time: Some students can get 50% more time. This means if a section usually lasts 30 minutes, they’ll have 45 minutes.
  2. Double the Time: Others might qualify for double time. So, a 30-minute section would last an hour for them.
  3. Multiple Days: The SAT can be spread over several days for those who need it.
  4. Reading Help: Students who have trouble reading can use tools that read the test out loud to them.
  5. Writing Tools: There are special tools for students who find writing by hand difficult.
  6. Math Aids: Calculators or other math tools may be allowed throughout the math sections, not just in parts where they’re typically permitted.
  7. Distraction-Free Rooms: Testing in a private room is possible for those who get easily distracted.
  8. Braille Tests: Students with vision impairments can request the test in Braille.

Each of these options helps students showcase their true abilities on the SAT, making college dreams more accessible.

How to Request Accommodations

To get special help on the SAT, students must ask for accommodations. You can do this through your school or on your own.

  • Talk to your school’s SSD Coordinator.
  • Schools have a special person to help with test change requests. This person can submit your request online through SSD Online.
  • Call Services for Students with Disabilities.
  • Get the right papers ready.
  • You need documents that show why you need these changes. These could be doctor’s notes or school reports.
  • Know what types of changes you can ask for.
  • Learn about different kinds of help like extra time or breaks during the test.
  • Choose how to send your request.
  • You can ask for changes online through SSD Online or by sending a paper form.
  • Keep track of deadlines.
  • Make sure you send your request early enough before your test date.
  • Prepare while you wait.
  • Practice for the SAT as you wait for approval of your request.
  • Check if your request is approved.
  • You’ll get a letter or email telling you if it was approved and what steps to take next.

Following these steps helps make sure students get the accommodations they need on test day.

Next Steps and Preparing for the SAT

Getting ready for the SAT takes planning and effort. Here’s how you can prepare effectively:

  1. Check if you qualify for extra time or other accommodations because of a disability. Students who have trouble with learning or attention may get help.
  2. Talk to your school about needing accommodations on the SAT. Your teachers and counselors can guide you through the process.
  3. Apply for accommodations through the College Board well before your test date. You’ll need to provide documents that show why you need extra time.
  4. Mark all important deadlines on your calendar. This includes when to apply for accommodations and when to register for the SAT.
  5. Gather all needed documents early. These could include reports from doctors or results from academic tests.
  6. Practice for the SAT under similar conditions as you will have during the actual test. If you get extended time, practice with that extra time, too.
  7. Make sure you understand which parts of the SAT might be easier or harder for you with your accommodations. Some students might spend more time on certain sections than others.
  8. Pack everything you’ll need for test day ahead of time. This includes your admission ticket, photo ID, approved calculator, and snacks for breaks.
  9. Get plenty of rest the night before your test day to stay sharp and focused.
  10. Arrive early at the testing center on test day to avoid any added stress from running late.

By following these steps, students can prepare for success on the SAT exam and ensure they have everything they need to do their best.


1. What is extended time for the SAT exam?

Extended time for the SAT exam gives extra testing time to students who need it.

2. Who can get extended time for the SAT?

Students with documented disabilities may qualify for extended time on the SAT.

3. How do I apply for extended time on my SAT test?

You must submit a request with documentation of your disability through your College Board account.

4. How much extra time can I get on the SAT with this accommodation?

The amount of extra time varies, but it could be 50% or more, depending on your needs.

5. Can all parts of the SAT exam have extended time?

Yes, all sections of the SAT can have extended time if approved as an accommodation.