Georgia SAT scores outpace national average for third year

Georgia’s class of 2020 is the third class in a row to outpace the national average on the SAT. CURTIS COMPTON / AJC FILE PHOTO
Georgia’s class of 2020 is the third class in a row to outpace the national average on the SAT. CURTIS COMPTON / AJC FILE PHOTO

Georgia public school students outperformed the national public school average on the SAT by 13 points, according to data released Wednesday by the Georgia Department of Education. Georgia’s class of 2020 is the third class in a row to outpace the national average.

The SAT is one of two widely known college entrance exams, with a math section and combined reading and writing section scored out of 1600 points.

For the class of 2020, Georgia public school students scored an average of 1043 on the SAT compared to the national average of 1030. Most of this improvement comes from the reading and writing section, where Georgia students scored an average of 532, 12 points higher than the national average of 520. Georgia’s math score is 511, one point higher than the national score of 510.

Compared to the previous year, scores dropped statewide and nationally. The state average dropped five points from 1048 in 2019 to 1043 in this year, while the national average dropped nine points from 1039 to 1030.

“The class of 2020 has faced unprecedented adversity and uncertainty due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” State School Superintendent Richard Woods said in a written statement.

The coronavirus pandemic led to the University System of Georgia waiving SAT and ACT test requirements for admissions in 2021 for the state’s 26 public colleges and universities. Across the country more than 1,200 colleges and universities have also waived the requirement.