Calculator use is permitted (for some sections) on the SAT. For many students, calculators can act as security blankets. While calculators can be very useful, if used correctly, they can lead to added stress if you rely on them too much. It is important to educate yourself on calculator policies for the SAT test well in advance of test day. Here are a few of the most popular calculator-related questions we receive from students:
I don’t have a calculator. Will my test center have extra calculators I could borrow? Could I share a calculator with someone else?
No, you need to bring your own calculator. You also cannot share your calculator with anyone else.
Can I use a calculator for all sections on the SAT?
You can only use a calculator during the Math – Calculator section. For all other sections including Reading, Writing & Math – No Calculator, you will be required to put the calculator away.
Can I use my phone as a calculator?
No, you can’t use your phone as a calculator. Nor can you use a laptop, tablet or any other device as a calculator. Your calculator must not have internet/wifi/bluetooth or audio/video recording capabilities.
What brand/type of calculators am I allowed to bring on SAT test day?
All scientific calculators and most graphing calculators are allowed. You can check for specific approved brands on the College Board website, if you like.
What are some General Calculator tips?
- Make sure you are familiar with the calculator you bring. Take a practice test with that exact calculator so that you know how to use it.
- Replace the batteries in your calculator at least two days before the SAT. Make sure it works!
- A calculator can often be a crutch. Use it where it is useful, but don’t try to use it to solve every single questions. Sometimes it is better to use other strategies such as elimination to get to the answer faster.
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