St. Mary's College of Maryland

The DAT: Basic Structure


  1. Survey of the Natural Sciences (90 minutes)
    • Biology (40 questions)
    • General Chemistry (30 questions)
    • Organic Chemistry (30 questions)
  2. Perceptual Ability (60 minutes)
    • This section is divided into six different problem sets designed to test perceptual ability, specifically in the areas of three dimensional manipulation and spatial reasoning.
  3. Reading Comprehension (60 minutes)
    • This section is comprised of three academic essays, each of which is followed by questions about the passage's content.
  4. Quantitative Reasoning (45 minutes)
    • This section tests basic mathematics skills, and is similar to the math section of the SAT.
    • Emphasis is placed on algebra, critical thinking, fractions, roots, and trigonometric identities.

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