What famous figure got a perfect SAT score – and which celebrity received a score less than 500?
Celebrities had to prepare for the SAT exam just like you, and their famous SAT scores might surprise you. Time Magazine lists some of these famous people who all went on to great success – even if you can’t tell by their SAT scores.
Remember that these scores are only from the Math and Verbal sections of the old SAT, for a possible total of 1600.
Highest Famous SAT Scores
Who has the highest famous SAT scores? No surprise here. Microsoft co-founders Bill Gates and Paul Allen earned scores of 1590 and 1600, respectively. The average SAT score has increased in the last few years, making these scores even more impressive for their time.
Also in the top are famous political commentator Bill O’Reilly, with an SAT score of 1585, and political speechwriter Ben Stein, who scored a 1573. You might remember Stein from his game show Win Ben Stein’s Money and his famous comedic acting in the 1980s classic Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, in which he played a boring but brainy professor. His famous high SAT score shows he has the smarts for the part!
Other celebrities with above average SAT scores include actress Natalie Portman, who allegedly received a score in the 1400s; and actor/musician Will Smith, who is rumored to have a perfect score but only admits to it being “pretty high.”
The Middle Ground
Famous horror author Stephen King and television host Meredith Vieira, of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire and The Today Show, both scored in the 1300s on their SATs. In the same range is former vice-president Al Gore, who got a score of 1355.
Gore’s opponent in the 2000 election, then-President George W. Bush, famously scored a 1206 on his SATs. His challenger in 2004, Secretary of State John Kerry, scored a bit lower, earning an 1190. Bush and Kerry submitted these scores to the school they both attended: Yale University.
The Lower Scores
Kobe Bryant, famous shooting guard for the Los Angeles Lakers, scored a 1080 on his SATs. Comedian Janeane Garofalo, who has also starred in films like The Cable Guy and Mystery Men, got a 950. Her score hasn’t affected her success: You can hear her voice in the recent animated movie Ratatouille (2007).
And who are the famous celebrities with the lowest SAT scores? Radio shock jock Howard Stern got an 870 on his SAT, placing him in the bottom.
But the celebrity with the infamously low score is Bill Cosby, who received less than a 500 on the test (the lowest-possible score at this time was a 400!).
Success Beyond a Score
When interpreting your SAT scores, keep in mind that you are much more than the results of a test. However, don’t discount the need to try your hardest – a little preparing for the SAT never hurt anybody.
Earning a high SAT score is a great accomplishment, but these famous SAT scores show that you’re remembered more for what happens after you leave the testing room and get into the real world!