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SAT Chemistry overview

SAT subject test in Chemistry is administered by College Board.

Time: The test is 60 minutes long

Number of questions: 85 multiple choice questions

Calculator: Not Allowed

Periodic table that indicated atomic numbers and masses is provided on the test.

Test Dates: Test is offered in August, October, November, December, May, and June.

Practice: College board released 2 official tests that can be purchases on its website.

To be well prepared for the test, a student has to take 1 year of introductory college level chemistry (general chemistry).

Content of the Test:

Structure of matter

  • Atomic Structure, including experimental evidence of atomic structure, quantum numbers and energy levels (orbitals), electron configurations, periodic trends

  • Molecular Structure, including Lewis structures, three-dimensional molecular shapes, polarity

  • Bonding, including ionic, covalent, and metallic bonds, relationships of bonding to properties and structures; intermolecular forces such as hydrogen bonding, dipole-dipole forces, dispersion (London) forces


States of matter

  • Gases, including the kinetic molecular theory, gas law relationships, molar volumes, density, and stoichiometry

  • Liquids and Solids, including intermolecular forces in liquids and solids, types of solids, phase changes, and phase diagrams

  • Solutions, including molarity and percent by mass concentrations, solution preparation and stoichiometry, factors affecting solubility of solids, liquids, and gases, qualitative aspects of colligative properties


Reaction types

  • Acids and Bases, including Brønsted-Lowry theory, strong and weak acids and bases, pH, titrations, indicators

  • Oxidation-Reduction, including recognition of oxidation-reduction reactions, combustion, oxidation numbers, use of activity series

  • Precipitation, including basic solubility rules



  • Mole Concept, including molar mass, Avogadro’s number, empirical and molecular formulas

  • Chemical Equations, including the balancing of equations, stoichiometric calculations, percent yield, and limiting reactants


Equilibrium and reaction rates

  • Equilibrium Systems, including factors affecting position of equilibrium (LeChâtelier's principle) in gaseous and aqueous systems, equilibrium constants, and equilibrium expressions

  • Rates of Reactions, including factors affecting reaction rates, potential energy diagrams, activation energies



  • Including conservation of energy, calorimetry and specific heats, enthalpy (heat) changes associated with phase changes and chemical reactions, heating and cooling curves, entropy


Descriptive chemistry

  • Including common elements, nomenclature of ions and compounds, periodic trends in chemical and physical properties of the elements, reactivity of elements and prediction of products of chemical reactions, examples of simple organic compounds and compounds of environmental concern



  • Including knowledge of laboratory equipment, measurements, procedures, observations, safety, calculations, data analysis, interpretation of graphical data, drawing conclusions from observations and data

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