Tips to Improve Your SAT Score – Tips and resources from College Board sources and unofficial sources for SAT Math, SAT Language as well as FREE online SAT practice tests and more.
It’s SAT test taking season for many high school juniors. The SAT can be taken at any time for high school student, but most students take their first crack at it their junior year (source). This leaves plenty of opportunities for re-takes in the fall of their senior year if they’re hoping to improve their score. That’s where this article comes in.
If your son or daughter’s SAT score isn’t all it could be, our friends at magoosh.com, an online test taking resource website, offers these 7 helpful tips – from author David Recine.
Tips to Improve Your SAT Score
Tips to Improve Your SAT Score – Tip #1
You should take one full-length practice test right away
This allows you to find your “baseline” SAT ability, the level of skill you have at the outset of your studies. Your baseline shows you the strengths you can build on and the weaknesses you need to address. visit magoosh.com to check one out a FREE online SAT exam
Keep Taking SAT Mock tests throughout your studies
Even after finding your baseline, you should never lose sight of what the real, full-length SAT feels like. So you should keep taking SAT practice tests. The College Board’s official set of practice SATs is a great source of ongoing practice.
Tips to Improve Your SAT Score – Tip #3
For SAT Reading, focus on context, not vocabulary
In SAT Reading, you’ll likely see words you’re not very familiar with. However, it would be a mistake to memorize hundreds of vocabulary words for the SAT Reading. A far easier and more guaranteed path to success is to build reading in context skills. Practice making educated guesses at the meanings of whole sentences, even when you have doubts about individual words.
On the SAT Writing and Language Test, practice your “splits.”
In SAT Writing and Language, you need to be mindful of a different kind of “split,” a the splits/differences between one answer choice and the next. Often, a single comma or a single difference in word form determine whether a Writing & Language answer choice is wrong. And the splits are just as important when each answer choice is totally different.
In SAT Math, learn to live without a calculator
SAT Math has both a calculator section and a no-calculator section. However, even in the section where you can use a calculator, you often shouldn’t. All too often, a calculator will actually slow you down. The problem is that calculator use encourages you to key in every possible step of a math problem, rather than finding mental shortcuts that allow you to skip some of a problem’s steps.
Process of elimination
When you don’t quite understand an answer choice, selecting it can feel unsafe. But don’t pass over an answer choice just because it’s confusing. Always start by eliminating the answers you know are wrong. If you’ve eliminated all of the other answers, choose that “last answer standing,” even if it’s confusing.
Tips to Improve Your SAT Score – Tip #7
In addition to taking SAT practice tests, you should think deeply about what’s on those tests. What kinds of SAT Math content do you need to know? What types of SAT Reading passages should you be familiar with? What rules of grammar and punctuation will guide your choices SAT Writing & Language? The College Board’s own official SAT guide web page can help you answer these important questions. So can unofficial sources, such as the Magoosh High School Blog.
Magoosh offers many test prep resources, including LSAT, GMAT, SAT, the ACT, and more (many resources are FREE). For more info on Tips to Improve Your SAT Score, visit magoosh.com or collegereadiness.collegeboard.org to check one out.