I’m from a competitive demographic (Asian American) and I scored low on the SAT (1510), how are my admissions chances impacted in top 10 schools, given that I’m at the top of my class?

I’m from a competitive demographic (Asian American) and I scored low on the SAT (1510), how are my admissions chances impacted in top 10 schools, given that I’m at the top of my class and have good extracurriculars? Please answer ASAP!




You need a reality check, my friend. Most students would be thrilled with a 1510.

Your chances are severely impact if this disingenuous woe-is-me attitude comes through on your essays or recs.


Are you a senior now? If so, it’s time to start focusing on other parts of your application, especially the essays. The T10 colleges are reaches for everyone, even those with a perfect 1600. As already mentioned, your attitude and how you come across on your essays will matter much more.


Regardless of your score, your chances of admit to t10 is low. Apply to whatever schools you want though!


If you are not accepted to a school it will NOT be because you scored a 1510.


Thanks everyone for the responses! I’ve just been researching that colleges expect people in my demographic to have 1560-70s, and that they will compare you to to others in your demographic. I recognize that the score I got is fine on it’s own.

Thus even more important for you to have true safeties. Of which T20’s or Ivies are not safeties for anyone.


No, they don’t. SAT scores are but one part of the application package. And a 1600 would not guarantee admission.


I think of my own SAT scores and laugh.

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“Researching” meaning looking up threads on CC / Reddit / etc? Or getting factual information from informed sources (which typically is NOT other applicants or people who have “heard” from a friend).

You will be evaluated in terms of your cohort- ie, the other students in your class (first), then your region, then the overall pool. The more people whose overall profile is similar to yours - test scores / gpa / course rigor / ECs- the more heavily demographics will weigh. The more you differentiate yourself the less heavily they will weigh.

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Why do you need to go to a top 10 college? There are hundreds of other colleges where you can get a very fine education.


Your SAT score is fine. It won’t get you in by itself, but neither would a 1600. Nor will it keep you out, if the rest of your application warrants admission. It’s a confirmation of your high academic achievement and aptitude.

If you’re a senior, forget about it now. You can submit a 1510 to any school you like. Work on your essays and applications. Choose a few safeties that you’d be happy to attend, a few matches that you’d be even happier at, and a few reaches. The 1510 will NOT keep you out of even the most competitive reach schools.


1510 is an excellent score so congratulations on a job well done. Whether that score will hurt or help your application depends on a number of factors, including the strength of the rest of your application, the competitiveness of your school and similar schools your area, the number of applicants with the same or better scores and grades from your school/area, etc.

Were I you I would arrange to speak to your college counselor and try to find out how applicants from your school with similar qualifications have fared in the past. Hopefully the counselor will have advice specifically tailored to your circumstance, rather than the generic advice people provide here.


As everyone else has said, a 1510 is a great score and will not keep you from being admitted at any school. Instead of worrying about getting a few extra points on the SAT you’d be better off making sure that you have a great application package that will help you stand out. Bring your unique voice to the process so that schools see you will be a great addition to their institution. Sadly, 1500+ SATs and perfect/near perfect gpa’s are a dime dozen at elite schools so what you need to do is focus on what makes you stand out - what do you bring to the table beyond your stats. Best of luck to you!


Fishing for compliments, a/k/a “humblebrag.”.

I don’t think so. A friend of my son, also Asian, retook SAT after scoring 1500. She is happy now with 1580.


Umm… a 1510 is NOT a low score. If you have a high class rank, competitive GPA, and outstanding extracurriculars may I remind you, you have all of those things. You will get into the Top 10 schools.

Thankfully, there is a lot more to getting admitted to a top 10 school than one good score. Valedictorians or even State champions in a sport don’t always get accepted. Your entire body of evidence has to appeal to an AO for you to gain acceptance. Work on having that shine through your application and essay. I would also encourage you to see the many fine schools that are outside of the top 10 that would be a great fit for you. I wish you the best!


At T10 schools admission is by region—meaning the AOs overseeing your region have to be impressed with your application. So the issue is not 1510 a good score or not, its whether its a top score in your school and in your school district, among Asian American students in your region. If not, then you either have to be more realistic about your chances at T10 or other parts of your application have to shine.