The Miller Analogies Test 99th percentile represents a scaled score of roughly 455+. There is a small margin of error here, but scores between 455-460 will almost definitely hit the mark. Scores above 460 certainly will. Let’s look at some other things that go into this score.
MAT Bell Curve
If you have not read about the MAT Bell curve, I certainly suggest it. In short, the score distribution on the the MAT looks like this:
Notice the distinct bell shape. Each of those dividing lines — labeled 1σ, 2σ, and so on –represents the standard deviation. Each line is 25 points from the next line in either direction. 25 points is the standard deviation on the MAT. So where on this is the 99th percentile?
It actually falls two thirds of the way between 2σ and 3σ. A 99th percentile score is about 60 points higher than the average MAT score (400; represented by the middle graph line). This means a score of 455+ is higher than the score of 99 percent of all test-takers.
How do I get this score?
The MAT, in theory, is testing your cognitive abilities; something that is normally tested on IQ tests. To be frank, a 99th percentile score is not something you are going to be able to study for unless you already possess a fair share of cognitive ability.
While I have certainly seen research indicating that small improvements can be made on cognitive exams, I have not seen any research validating a method for moving oneself from average to the 99th percentile on these types of tests. However, it doesn’t really matter since you won’t need that high of a score.
Most colleges are not looking for a 99th percentile score on an exam like this; the bar is considerably lower in fact. Most students only need to do the following to attain a good score on the MAT:
- Learn the test and analogy format
- Create a 1-2 month study plan
- Practice analogies
- Strategically increase content knowledge
The average student can answer between 41-48 questions correctly on the MAT. If you can increase this number by just 8-10 more correct answers, you immediately move your score up to the 70th or even 80th percentiles. While this might only be “above average” on other exams, it is a huge leap on tests of cognitive ability. It will almost certainly be enough for the colleges you are applying to.
If you need help with these goals, our blog on “How to master the Miller Analogies Test” will cover everything you need.