SAT Subject Test in Mathematics Level 2

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In the USA, the SAT Subject Test in Mathematics Level 2 (formerly known as Math II or Math IIC, the "C" representing the sanctioned use of a calculator) is a one-hour multiple choice test. The questions cover a broad range of topics. Approximately 10-14% of questions focus on numbers and operations, 48-52% focus on algebra and functions, 28-32% focus on geometry (coordinate, three-dimensional, and trigonometric geometry are covered; plane geometry is not directly tested), and 8-12% focus on data analysis, statistics and probability.[1] Compared to Mathematics 1, Mathematics 2 is more advanced. Whereas the Mathematics 1 test covers Algebra II and basic trigonometry, a pre-calculus class is good preparation for Mathematics 2.[2]

Format[edit]

The test has 50 multiple choice questions that are to be answered in one hour.[3] All questions have five answer choices. Students receive 1 point for every correct answer, lose ¼ of a point for each incorrect answer, and receive 0 points for questions left blank.

Calculator use[edit]

The College Board states that a calculator "may be useful or necessary" for about 55-60% of the questions on the test. The College Board also encourages the use of a graphing calculator over a scientific calculator,[4] saying that the test was "developed with the expectation that most students are using graphing calculators."[5]

For the Mathematics Level Two test, students are not permitted to use calculators that have a QWERTY format keyboard, require an electrical outlet, make noise, use paper tape, have non-traditional methods of input (such as a stylus), or are part of a communication device (such as PDAs, laptops, or cell phones).[5]

Preparation[edit]

The College Board suggests as preparation for the test four years of mathematics, including two years of algebra, one year of geometry, and one year of either precalculus or trigonometry.[6]

While the precalculus or trigonometry course may be good preparation for this test, students may need to buy extra resource materials if they want to score beyond a 700. The exam covers several years of mathematics, and students are expected to work quickly and efficiently.

Scoring[edit]

For each of the 50 multiple choice questions, students receive 1 point for every correct answer, lose ¼ of a point for each incorrect answer, and receive 0 points for questions left blank. This creates a raw score, which is then converted into a scaled score. The conversion between these numbers varies depending on the difficulty of a particular test administration. The scaled score is the only score reported to either students or colleges, and ranges from 200 to 800, with 800 being the best possible score. The standard deviation of the test scores in 2006 was 105.[7]

11 percent of the 2009 college-bound seniors taking the test received a perfect score of 800. The mean score was 648.[7]

References[edit]

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