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Rachel Kapelke-Dale

SAT Question of the Day

When it comes to SAT prep, how often you practice is more important than you might think. In fact, we consistently see students who practice regularly—even if it’s just an hour or less each day—improve their scores significantly. With that in mind, we wanted to offer you the chance to get into the habit of this daily practice in a (relatively) painless way—Magoosh’s SAT Question of the Day!

Calendar-SAT Question of the Day-magoosh

On this page, you’ll find an SAT Question of the Day for every day of the week. In an ideal world, you’d wait for the labeled day to come around before doing each problem—but if you get overwhelmed by your need to do more SAT problems RIGHT NOW, you can always navigate to each day’s SAT Question of the Day using the links below.

Happy practicing!


SAT Question of the Day

Click the buttons to jump to each day’s SAT practice question.

Monday-SAT Question of the Day-magoosh Tuesday-SAT Question of the Day-magoosh Wednesday-SAT Question of the Day-magoosh Thursday-SAT Question of the Day-magoosh
Friday-SAT Question of the Day-magoosh Saturday-SAT Question of the Day-magoosh Sunday-SAT Question of the Day-magoosh


 

Monday’s SAT Question of the Day

Choose the option that best answers the question.

a2 – 26a + 69 = 0. If a – 5 > 0, what is the value of a?

A. 3
B. 5
C. 18
D. 23

Click to view the Answer and Explanation.
 
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Tuesday’s SAT Question of the Day

Question 1 is based on the following passage.

Arvo Part’s famous musical composition Cantus in Memoriam Benjamin Britten begins and ends in silence. After three beats of stillness, one musician rings a bell three times with the slow solemnity of a death toll. The sounds of silence and death give way to the pure voice of strings which flows along in their wake. After a sublime, sorrowful opening in A minor, the violin beckons the warmer C major scale into the pulse of the piece. The strings follow one another on a quest for the deepest note, until finally each holds a long, steady low C, then breaks into silence. It is just one of Part’s modern compositions in the classical style, and it perfectly reveals the man and his music.

Born in Estonia in 1935, the young Arvo had no musical instrument in the house except a broken piano. The middle section where most music is played barely made a sound, leading the boy to experiment with the less used notes at the extreme ends of the keyboard. Some have suggested that the intense contrasts in his later compositions may reflect these early explorations. He began formally studying music in 1954, playing in the military band for several years. After spending some time as a sound producer dabbling in composition, he began earnestly studying music from the medieval and Renaissance periods. Crystallized in its purity, this early music entranced him.

Before discovering the medieval and Renaissance music at the root of Western music, Part had chosen to compose thoroughly modern pieces based on Western experimental musical techniques, like twelve-tone technique and serialism. The Soviet Union in which Part lived did not take kindly to this modern Western music, and officials routinely banned Part’s compositions from public performance. However, the genius of the work allowed him to win a variety of awards and accolades even in the Soviet Union. By 1968, Soviet oppression had encouraged him to abandon the modernist techniques, and a love of purity began to lead him to the early Western music.

At the heart of medieval music is unity. Many voices join to become one without distinction or ambition. While the modern Western techniques discovered new realms of music, they did so without pursuing unity. Arvo Part recovered the medieval sense of unified sound and brought it into the modern day. After a decade of silence spent contemplating this early Western music, the composer reemerged as a mature voice with Tabula Rasa, Spiegel im Spiegel, and In Memoriam Benjamin Britten. As part of his effort to return to the purity of the medieval and Renaissance sound, Part invented a new compositional technique called tintinnabuli. Although these classical compositions were steeped in the spirit of early music, they made use of the breadth of Part’s expertise by incorporating elements of the orchestra which did not exist in medieval and Renaissance eras and by dwelling on the discordant elements of human emotion and experience. The combination of disparate influences resulted in a pure sound with a modern story. Part combines these influences to explore themes of forgiveness, sorrow, contemplation, and searching.

Soviet censors, however, continued the same opposition toward the new creations of the composer as they employed against his older work. Part’s life as an artist proved very difficult. In 1980, he and his wife and sons finally managed to move to Austria, then to Germany. A few years later, he met a producer for a European recording label who helped spread Part’s work. Few classical composers in the modern day attain public fame, particularly composers with experimental techniques. However, Part’s compositions gained such notoriety that his concert seats fill with young families, hipsters, college students, and elderly music lovers. Despite Part’s distance from modern musical fashions, members of every age and education level who hear his work understand that they have found something without borders: art which expresses the questions of humanity.

After reading the passage, choose the best answer based on what is stated or implied in the passage.

1. The main purpose of the first paragraph is to

A. explain the purpose of Part’s music.
B. describe the experience of listening to Part.
C. illustrate the importance of music in our modern time.
D. demonstrate the importance of silence in music.

Click to view the Answer and Explanation.
 
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Wednesday’s SAT Question of the Day

You only need to watch a film from the 1980s that takes place in an office to know that there has been a dramatic shift in our workplace environments. Watching such a film, 1 one will likely notice that many cubicles (still a workplace staple) have unwieldy computers and an equally unwieldy office phone. 2 Looking even more closely and you might notice that computer screens provided little more than a blinking cursor and static rows of information. Within that cubicle the only form of escape was to retreat within one’s head. Today, daydreaming—whether in a cubicle or elsewhere—doesn’t even seem possible: at every moment we are tempted by the web. And nowhere is that tug more omnipresent than in an office cubicle.

After reading the passage, choose the answer that most effectively improves the quality of writing in the passage or that makes the passage conform to the conventions of standard written English. Choose the “NO CHANGE” option if you think the best choice is to leave the relevant portion of the passage as it is.

one will likely notice that

A. NO CHANGE
B. you’ll likely notice that
C. you will likely be noticing that
D. Delete.

Click to view the Answer and Explanation.
 
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Thursday’s SAT Question of the Day

Choose the option that best answers the question.

Five lemonades and two cookies cost 1.50. Two lemonades and five cookies cost 2.70. How much do one cookie and one lemonade cost?

A. $0.10
B. $0.50
C. $0.60
D. $1.50

Click to view the Answer and Explanation.
 
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Friday’s SAT Question of the Day

Question 2 is based on the following passage.

Arvo Part’s famous musical composition Cantus in Memoriam Benjamin Britten begins and ends in silence. After three beats of stillness, one musician rings a bell three times with the slow solemnity of a death toll. The sounds of silence and death give way to the pure voice of strings which flows along in their wake. After a sublime, sorrowful opening in A minor, the violin beckons the warmer C major scale into the pulse of the piece. The strings follow one another on a quest for the deepest note, until finally each holds a long, steady low C, then breaks into silence. It is just one of Part’s modern compositions in the classical style, and it perfectly reveals the man and his music.

Born in Estonia in 1935, the young Arvo had no musical instrument in the house except a broken piano. The middle section where most music is played barely made a sound, leading the boy to experiment with the less used notes at the extreme ends of the keyboard. Some have suggested that the intense contrasts in his later compositions may reflect these early explorations. He began formally studying music in 1954, playing in the military band for several years. After spending some time as a sound producer dabbling in composition, he began earnestly studying music from the medieval and Renaissance periods. Crystallized in its purity, this early music entranced him.

Before discovering the medieval and Renaissance music at the root of Western music, Part had chosen to compose thoroughly modern pieces based on Western experimental musical techniques, like twelve-tone technique and serialism. The Soviet Union in which Part lived did not take kindly to this modern Western music, and officials routinely banned Part’s compositions from public performance. However, the genius of the work allowed him to win a variety of awards and accolades even in the Soviet Union. By 1968, Soviet oppression had encouraged him to abandon the modernist techniques, and a love of purity began to lead him to the early Western music.

At the heart of medieval music is unity. Many voices join to become one without distinction or ambition. While the modern Western techniques discovered new realms of music, they did so without pursuing unity. Arvo Part recovered the medieval sense of unified sound and brought it into the modern day. After a decade of silence spent contemplating this early Western music, the composer reemerged as a mature voice with Tabula Rasa, Spiegel im Spiegel, and In Memoriam Benjamin Britten. As part of his effort to return to the purity of the medieval and Renaissance sound, Part invented a new compositional technique called tintinnabuli. Although these classical compositions were steeped in the spirit of early music, they made use of the breadth of Part’s expertise by incorporating elements of the orchestra which did not exist in medieval and Renaissance eras and by dwelling on the discordant elements of human emotion and experience. The combination of disparate influences resulted in a pure sound with a modern story. Part combines these influences to explore themes of forgiveness, sorrow, contemplation, and searching.

Soviet censors, however, continued the same opposition toward the new creations of the composer as they employed against his older work. Part’s life as an artist proved very difficult. In 1980, he and his wife and sons finally managed to move to Austria, then to Germany. A few years later, he met a producer for a European recording label who helped spread Part’s work. Few classical composers in the modern day attain public fame, particularly composers with experimental techniques. However, Part’s compositions gained such notoriety that his concert seats fill with young families, hipsters, college students, and elderly music lovers. Despite Part’s distance from modern musical fashions, members of every age and education level who hear his work understand that they have found something without borders: art which expresses the questions of humanity.

After reading the passage, choose the best answer based on what is stated or implied in the passage.

2. The passage implies that Part’s music

A. never gained a following in his home, but grew very popular in the West.
B. so closely matched the spirit of his time that it gained a wide following.
C. expressed qualities too universal to go out of fashion.
D. gained fame only after he incorporated early music techniques.

Click to view the Answer and Explanation.
 
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Saturday’s SAT Question of the Day

Choose the option that best answers the question.

According to a conservation biologist, the number of bison in a national park is declining at an annual rate of 1.74%. If the current population is 18,000, which of the following expressions appropriately models the population of bison five years from now?

A. 18,000 (1 - .01745)
B. 18,000 (1 - .0174)5
C. 18,000 - .01745
D. (18,000 - .0174)5

Click to view the Answer and Explanation.
 
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Sunday’s SAT Question of the Day

Many 3 wonder, with online access readily available, how anybody even gets any work done in the first place. They would indeed be shocked to learn that having access to the Internet might actually result in heightened productivity. One should not, however, rush to the conclusion that unrestrained use of the Internet, at work no less, is compatible with any level of productivity. 4 When workers use ten minutes or so of web surfing as an incentive to complete a task. Their productivity is greater than had they not had any access to the Internet. But they have to alternate every few hours.

After reading the passage, choose the answer that most effectively improves the quality of writing in the passage or that makes the passage conform to the conventions of standard written English. Choose the “NO CHANGE” option if you think the best choice is to leave the relevant portion of the passage as it is.

wonder, with online access readily available, how

A. NO CHANGE
B. wonder, with online access readily available how
C. wonder with online access readily available, how
D. wonder, with online access readily available: how

Click to view the Answer and Explanation.
 
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A Final Word

If you want to go from trying one SAT “Question of the Day” to multiple SAT questions each day, check out Magoosh SAT Prep for more than 400 additional practice problems!

P.S. Ready to get your highest SAT score? Start here.
About Rachel Kapelke-Dale

Rachel is a High School and Graduate Exams blogger at Magoosh. She has a Bachelor of Arts from Brown University, an MA from the Université de Paris VII, and a PhD from University College London. She has taught test preparation and consulted on admissions practices for over eight years. Currently, Rachel divides her time between the US and London. Follow Rachel on Twitter, or learn more about her writing here!


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