SAT Skills Insight

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Select a score band

Reasoning and Inferencing

Skills needed to score in this band

SKILL 1: Perform complex reasoning tasks on short sections of text

SKILL 2: Determine an author’s unstated assumptions and develop inferences from explicit evidence in different sections of a text

SKILL 3: Draw multiple extended inferences that require several steps of reasoning

SKILL 4: Draw inferences based on implications throughout a text

SKILL 5: Consider the entire text when making inferences, linking information to ideas both before and after a specific section

SKILL 6: Integrate both general and detailed information across texts 

 

  1. 1

    Perform complex reasoning tasks on short sections of text

    Example

    The following passage is from a 1993 book that discusses the effects of environment on behavior.

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    In lines 29–30, “the right thing” primarily refers to behavior that is

    Answer Choices
  2. 2

    Determine an author’s unstated assumptions and develop inferences from explicit evidence in different sections of a text

    Example

    The following passage is from a 1993 book that discusses the effects of environment on behavior.

    View Passage

    The author suggests that “paying a professional decorator to find a better spot for the sofa” (lines 52–53) is

    Answer Choices
  3. 3

    Draw multiple extended inferences that require several steps of reasoning

    Example

    The following passage is from a 1993 book that discusses the effects of environment on behavior.

    View Passage

    In lines 59–67 (“If a . . . see”) the difference between the child’s and the adult’s responses to wearing the eyeglasses primarily demonstrates the

    Answer Choices

Skills needed to score in the next band

When you’ve finished reading a text, think about the conclusions you’ve drawn from that text. How might these conclusions apply to a different scenario or situation? Think about other texts your conclusions bring to mind, and consider how your conclusions might relate to them.

As you read a challenging text, think about the assumptions that underlie the author’s position. What does the author assume about the world? Are the author’s assumptions logical? Are his or her assumptions defensible? Does your view of the author and his or her assumptions affect your understanding of the text?

Read essays by different authors on the same topic or related topics. Analyze the essays’ similarities and differences from many different perspectives. Consider things such as each author’s reasoning, evidence, and logical appeals.

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