1) The SAT tests students' knowledge of subjects that have been shown related to college success: critical reading, writing, and mathematics.
2) The SAT is typically taken by college-bound high school juniors and seniors in both public and private high schools.
3) Participation rate (percent of graduating students tested) varies widely, from 87% in Maine, where all 3rd year high school students are required to take the test, to 3% in Iowa, Mississippi, and North and South Dakota, where a select few choose to.
4) Comparing SAT scores between states must be done with caution due to the fact that the score of students from a particular state that take the test cannot generally represent the score if all students from that state took the test. (This is referred to as 'self-selection' of the test population.)
5) Funding numbers represent only public schools and don't account for cost-of-living differences nor funding for instruction versus administration
6) Impressive results in Iowa, North and South Dakota, Illinois, Missouri, Minnesota, Michigan, and Wisconsin. These states are
spending an average amount per pupil and their college-bound students are achieving top SAT scores nationwide.
7) Washington DC spends 60% more per pupil than most states and receives the lowest SAT scores nationwide.