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SAT Vocabulary Practice

Improving your vocabulary is one of the best ways to improve your Critical Reading score on the SAT (Scholastic Aptitude Test). The following list of practice words tests your knowledge of 20 of the most commonly used SAT vocabulary words. Test your knowledge, and then get some additional practice with links to some printable SAT vocabulary worksheets as well.

SAT Vocabulary Practice

For each of the 20 SAT vocabulary words listed below, select the appropriate definition from the multiple choice list that follows it. These questions are similar to what you'll encounter on the exam itself, as the list of possible definitions are generally possible synonyms of the target word. In the current incarnation of the SAT, the vocabulary test usually asks for the meaning of words in the context of a passage, which should help as well.

To check your answers, you can either click on the link to go to the definition from YourDictionary, or you can refer to the answer key at the end of this page to see how many SAT vocabulary words you got correct.

1. Abhor

A. To hate

B. To be very dry

C. To be careful

D. To love

2. Abysmal

A. Vacant

B. Bad

C. Unlucky

D. Timeless

3. Benevolent

A. Rude

B. Unpleasant

C. Friendly

D. Cheerful

4. Capitulate

A. Argue

B. Surrender

C. Question

D. Destroy

5. Complacent

A. Worried

B. Bored

C. Satisfied

D. Complementary

6. Eccentric

A. Terrible

B. Unconventional

C. Average

D. Wealthy

7. Enervating

A. Tiring

B. Energizing

C. Questioning

D. Annoying

8. Fortuitous

A. Sneaky

B. Careful

C. Smart

D. Lucky

9. Inevitable

A. Unavoidable

B. Infinite

C. Endless

D. Extreme

10. Mundane

A. Ordinary

B. Important

C. Boring

D. Exciting

11. Nonchalant

A. Careless

B. Cautious

C. Creative

D. Casual

12. Postulate

A. Assert

B. Deny

C. Question

D. Criticize

13. Pragmatic

A. Foolish

B. Treacherous

C. Practical

D. Inspired  

14. Principle

A. First

B. Municipality

C. Ignorance

D. Rule

15. Prudent

A. Careful

B. Frugal

C. Intelligent

D. Foolish

16. Reclusive

A. Quiet

B. Withdrawn

C. Secretive

D. Untrustworthy


A. Suspicion

B. Courage

C. Creativity

D. Wisdom

18. Tenacious

A. Persistent

B. Foolish

C. Querulous

D. Restrained

19. Vindicate

A. Blame

B. Indite

C. Scold

D. Free from blame

20. Wary

A. Watchful

B. Brave

C. Smart

D. Reclusive

Additional Practice

Now that you have completed our practice quiz on 20 SAT multiple choice words, you might want to test your knowledge with our common SAT flash cards or try some of these printable worksheets for additional SAT vocabulary practice:

  • InstructorWEB provides 10 printable SAT lessons and practice vocabulary worksheets.

  • has games, word puzzles and printable worksheets designed to help improve your knowledge of SAT vocabulary words.

Improve Your Essay Writing

For the optional essay component of the SAT, you'll want to brush up on your essay writing skills too. Get started with the basics on how to write an essay, and then move on to examine several essay examples to see how those elements come together. 

SAT Vocabulary Test Answer Key

Here are the answers to the vocabulary practice words above.

  1. A

  2. B

  3. C

  4. B

  5. C

  6. B

  7. A

  8. D

  9. A

  10. C

  11. D

  12. A

  13. C

  14. D

  15. A

  16. B

  17. D

  18. A

  19. D

  20. A

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