Middle Level SSAT Practice Test

What Is Middle Level SSAT Test And How to Study for It?

If your child is in the 5th–7th grade and seeking admission into a private school, then they will need to prepare for the SSAT Middle Level Test.

In this article, we explain everything you need to know about the SSAT Middle Level exam and how your child can successfully prepare for it using TestPrep Online’s preparation materials.

Remember, practice is the key to success.

What Is The SSAT Middle Level Exam?

The Middle Level Secondary Schools Admission Test (SSAT) is taken by 5-7th grade students applying for admission to private schools. The test follows the same format as the Upper Level SSAT. Both tests are multiple choice and include more sections than the lower-level SSAT.

The Middle Level SSAT Test evaluates a student’s verbal, mathematical, and reading skills. These skills are required for a student to successfully pass in independent schools.

An SSAT score report provides private schools with an in-depth, visual overview of a student’s academic potential.

Paper SSAT and Prometric Test Centers are available in the United States, Canada, and various other international locations. Prometric Test Centers offer proctored computer-based testing at a specific test center. SSAT at Home is only available in the United States and Canada.

SSAT Middle Level Test Format and Content

The Middle Level SSAT Test contains 167 questions, including a writing sample. Students have three hours and five minutes to complete the test. This SSAT time limit includes two breaks: a five-minute one and a ten-minute one.

SSAT Test Format

  • SSAT Essay Section
  • 5-minute break
  • SSAT Quantitative Section
  • SSAT Reading Comprehension
  • 10-minute break
  • SSAT Verbal Section
  • SSAT Quantitative Section
  • Experimental Section

SSAT Test Content

Girl in White Long Sleeve Shirt Writing

SSAT Essay

Students start the test off with the SSAT Essay. In the SSAT Essay, students can choose between a creative story starter or a personal question prompt. The topics in the writing sample section are usually very broad and varied, and they provide students with the opportunity to express themselves.

The writing sample is not scored, but it is provided to the private schools that your child is applying to. This helps these schools assess your child’s writing abilities.

Students are given 25 minutes to complete this section.

SSAT Test, Quantitative Section

In the SSAT Quantitative section, students must answer 50 questions in 60 minutes.

The quantitative section assesses a student’s ability to solve problems involving math concepts such as geometry, arithmetic, computations, ratios and proportions, and elementary algebra. Other math concepts include word problems, positive and negative numbers, odd and even numbers, and basic angle measurement.

Students will also need to provide answers to basic addition, subtraction, division, and multiplication questions. As well as interpret data and calculate percentages, fractions, and decimals.

In the quantitative section, students are not allowed to use a calculator.

SSAT Test Reading Comprehension

The SSAT Reading Comprehension in the Middle Level SSAT aims to assess a student’s reading ability and comprehension. This section contains 40 questions that students have to complete in a 40-minute timeframe. The reading passages range from 250 to 300 words.

After reading each passage, students are required to provide answers to questions based on its content or the author’s intent, style, and perspective. The questions ask students to make predictions based on information in the reading passage, identify details, find the main idea, make inferences, understand and evaluate options and arguments, and obtain the meaning of a word or phrase from its context.

The Middle Level SSAT Test uses two types of writing, narrative and argument. Narrative writing includes excerpts from short stories, novels, poems, and essays, whereas argumentative writing shows a definite point of view about a specific subject.

The reading passages come from social studies, such as history, economics, and sociology; literary fiction; the humanities, such as art, poetry, and biography; and science, such as medicine, anthropology, and astronomy.

SSAT Test Verbal Section

The SSAT Verbal section has 60 questions that must be completed in 30 minutes. This section tests a student’s verbal reasoning, vocabulary, and ability to logically relate ideas.

Topics that are covered in this section include word similarities and word relationships through synonyms and analogies.

Synonym questions assess a student’s vocabulary strength, and analogy questions evaluate a student’s ability to relate ideas to each other in a logical way.

Synonyms are words that share the same or similar meaning as another word. For example, charming, dazzling, and appealing are all synonyms for beautiful. Synonym questions require students to choose an answer word with a similar meaning to the prompt word.

Analogies compare two things that share similarities. These comparisons are crucial in improving decision-making skills, problem-solving skills, reading and vocabulary skills, communication and reasoning skills, and perception and memory.

Analogies help students make significant decisions, process information actively, improve understanding, and aid in long-term memory. When students examine these relationships, it stimulates creative and critical thinking.


Lastly, students will need to complete the Experimental section in 15 minutes. There are 16 questions that need to be answered in this section.

Topics covered in the Experimental part of the Middle Level SSAT include five quantitative questions, five reading questions, and six verbal questions.

Students do not have to study anything specific for this section as it is not scored. The Experimental section is created to assess the quality, security, and reliability of new potential questions. So a student will not be tested, but rather the questions themselves.

How To Prepare For The Middle Level SSAT

What Happens If a Student Misses The STAAR Test

Depending on your child’s current academic records, some sections will require less or more practice.

Students who enjoy reading books won’t have to spend as much time practicing their reading comprehension as they already have the necessary experience. But, with that being said, it’s always a good idea to practice your reading speed.

Some students benefit from first scanning through the reading passage and then searching for specific information to answer questions. Other students may prefer to slowly read through the passage as they retain information better; this saves them time from going back and forth between passages and questions.

Students who have better math skills can focus more on reading comprehension, essay composition, and vocabulary.

The quantitative section of the Middle Level SSAT only makes up a certain portion of the test. It is important for students to know what information is vital in word problems, how to extract and use it, and how to use it to find a solution to the question. Students must understand how to perform calculations, and they need to memorize the necessary formulas.

Students also should get ample sleep the night before the test and have healthy, well-balanced meals, as this will ensure that they remain focused and have sufficient energy.

Final Thoughts

The best way to prepare for the Middle Level SSAT is to take free SSAT practice tests. This way, your child can become acquainted with the questions and have a good idea of what to expect on the actual test.

TestPrep Online provides helpful preparation materials that will aid your child in successfully passing their Middle Level SSAT.