Getting a high SAT score is the top priority of every high school student across the world who has dreams of joining a university of their choice in the United States. However, plenty of preparation is required in order to achieve a good score. An entire SAT preparation industry has boomed based on the needs of the students to score well in SAT. If you plan on attempting SAT in the near future, here are a few tips that will be of great help for you.
Practice Makes Perfect
Like the old saying, nothing beats practice to improve your score. Each practice test will help you perform under pressure like the real SAT. Once you learn to answer the questions accurately within the given time, you will find that you are more relaxed and confident. Regular practice sessions will also help you familiarise yourself with the different test sections, thereby giving you a chance to be well prepared for the test. Many candidates, who are attempting SAT for the first time, make the mistake of not familiarising themselves with the different sections that will be asked in the test, thereby losing precious minutes which could have been used for answering the questions.
Understand the Test Structure
The SAT is made up of ten different sections. Each section has its own set of questions and needs to be completed within the allotted time. If you are familiar with the structure, you will not be quickly surprised during the exam. The SAT test questions are prepared in a way that the difficulty will increase as you move on through the test. Ultimately, this means that the toughest questions in the test will need to be answered towards the end of the duration of the test, increasing the pressure on the students as well. If you are familiar with the structure of the SAT test, you are able to move through the initial questions quickly and devote more time to the difficult questions that are waiting at the end of the test for you.
According to the data collected over the years from different SAT test takers, it is interesting to note that candidates who have a better command over their reading abilities tend to score higher than their peers. You can use this information to your advantage and improve your reading skills by reading unfamiliar topics and contents to improve your reading speed as well as your grasping ability of the content. Once you lower the time required to read through long passages, you can use this ability to move through the reading comprehension passage in the AT test quickly, thereby saving a few valuable minutes.
Build Up Your Vocabulary
It is impossible to learn every word in the dictionary in preparation for the upcoming SAT exams. However, you can improve your vocabulary by using flashcards to study whenever you get time. Most top scorers, start at least a year before writing the actual exams to get a handle on their vocabulary status.
Write Practice Essays
The SAT exam consists of a 25 minute essay section. You will be given an unfamiliar topic and expected to plan, write and proofread your essay within the 25 minutes. You can master this art by writing as many practice essays as possible. This will help improve your grasp of sentence structure as well as use some of the vocabulary words that you have been learning.
Practice Using The Calculator
Although teachers praise the concept of mental math, during the SAT exam, you can use your calculator. You need to get to use the calculator quickly in order to avoid wasting time entering in equations. Once you start practicing during your preparation using your calculator, you will find that it becomes almost second nature to you.
Learn Your Formulas
Although the SAT test will have some formulae stated at the beginning, it is best to learn them to save precious time. Make sure you are well versed with different formulae that are used for calculating area, volume and so on. If you are well versed with the formulae, you don’t have to waste time thinking about them while writing the exam.
Learn The Art of Elimination
Since the majority of the questions are multiple choice questions, you can use the art of elimination to find the right answer, in case you are not sure of the answer. This can help save precious time by saving unnecessary time spent on a single question. However, you need to very careful while using this technique, as each negative answer carries ¼ of the total mark. So use this method only when you are confident of getting the right answer.
Many students get stressed out over the thought of writing the SAT exams. This affects their performance and brings down their score unnecessarily. You need to relax and be well rested in order to perform to your best ability. If you have prepared well, you have nothing to worry. Pick up the test booklet and start cracking away at those questions!
The SAT exam will consist of the following sections:
This is a 65 minutes section with 52 multiple choice questions
This is an 80 minute section with 58 multiple choice questions along with one set of grid-in questions.
Writing And Language Sections
This is a 35 minute section with 44 multiple choice questions.
This is a 50 minute section with one essay question. The candidate will have to write a persuasive essay with good sentence structure and grammar.