Curious how your SAT score compares? Knowing how your SAT score compares to national and state averages can be a helpful tool as you study and prepare. What is the average SAT score, both nationally and by state, and how does yours compare? 

Average Score on the SAT

The latest national average (September 2023) on the SAT is 1028, with a top score of 1600. By section, the national averages are: 

Average Evidence-based Reading and Writing score: 480
Average Math score: 530

This data can help you understand where your score ranks. If you score 1030, that means you’re slightly above the 50th percentile: about half of the people taking the test scored higher than you and half scored lower. 

SAT 2023 scores

Average Scores by State

This chart shows the latest data for average SAT scores by state. Keep in mind the percentage of students who take the test in that state. If a state requires all their high school juniors to take the SAT, overall scores might be lower. In other states, students may only take the SAT if they plan to apply to college, or students in a particular state may primarily take the ACT instead. 

To compare your state’s scores with another state, it’s best to compare between states that have similar percentages of students taking the SAT each year.

State % Taking the SAT Average Score
Alabama  3% 1161
Alaska  30% 1082
Arizona  11% 1183
Arkansas  2% 1192
California  25% 1083
Colorado  90% 996
Connecticut  93% 1007
Delaware  95% 958
District of Columbia  100% 969
Florida  90% 966
Georgia  53% 1054
Hawaii  30% 1114
Idaho  95% 970
Illinois  96% 970
Indiana  100% 971
Iowa  2% 1208
Kansas  2% 1245
Kentucky  2% 1208
Louisiana  3% 1194
Maine  38% 1080
Maryland  71% 1008
Massachusetts  57% 1112
Michigan  97% 967
Minnesota  3% 1201
Mississippi  1% 1184
Missouri  3% 1191
Montana  5% 1193
Nebraska  1% 1252
Nevada  6% 1166
New Hampshire 82% 1035
New Jersey  64% 1066
New Mexico  94% 901
New York  62% 1039
North Carolina  24% 1127
North Dakota  1% 1287
Ohio  18% 1044
Oklahoma  18% 953
Oregon  24% 1125
Pennsylvania  48% 1078
Rhode Island  95% 958
South Carolina  50% 1028
South Dakota  1% 1208
Tennessee  4% 1191
Texas  71% 978
Utah  2% 1239
Vermont  45% 1099
Virginia  49% 1113
Washington  37% 1081
West Virginia  90% 923
Wisconsin  2% 1236
Wyoming  1% 1200
National   1028

Does the average SAT score matter?

The average SAT score can be a good benchmark, but it shouldn’t be your goal. Here are a few other ways to know where your SAT score stands.

Start by looking at the colleges you want to attend. If the admissions requirement at your top school is 1300, then you don’t want to settle for an average SAT score of 1050. Even then, that can only be your final goal if you are looking to pay full price for college.

Set a realistic but ambitious goal for yourself. For some students, the goal might be the state or national average SAT score. For others, it might be higher. If your SAT score is too low to receive any merit-based aid at your dream school, add a few more schools to your list!

Remember that you are your own biggest competition. Your goal should be to work your hardest to get your best score. That means preparing well, taking practice tests, and taking the SAT multiple times. Don’t compare yourself to your classmates or siblings. 

Keep taking the test. Your first test will probably not be your best score. Many students earn their best score the third or fourth time they take the SAT. So don’t stop with your first (or even second) score! Keep working hard and pushing yourself to see how you can improve. 


Whether you’re looking to improve your below-average score to above-average or to get into your best-fit college (and win those scholarship dollars!), SAT prep can help. Learn more on our website.