The SAT is probably one of the most well-known and dreaded standardized tests. For many students just the term “standardized test” can cause anxiety. However, the fact that the SAT is a standardized part is actually a good thing. Since it is standardized, we know what to expect and can prepare for it accordingly.
To get your started in your SAT prep, here are the top 5 tips for preparing for the SAT:
1. Take a Practice Test – Taking a practice test is the single most important thing you can do. By taking a practice test, you will see what you’re in for. All of the preparation you do after will make a lot more sense because you will see how what you are learning relates back to the test. You will also be able to identify your strengths and weaknesses.
2. Work on the Areas with the Opportunity for Greatest Improvement – Your goal is to score as high as possible, so your preparation should be focused on increasing your score. For example. if you were one question away from acing all of the “Heart of Algebra” questions and 5 questions away from acing all of the “Passport to Advanced Math” questions, you should work on the “Passport to Advanced Math” questions.
3. Take More Practice Tests – After you have been studying and practicing for a while, take a practice test to see if you are improving. If you haven’t improved much, something has to change. A lot of times what needs to change is the amount of effort your put into studying. Plus, the more tests your take, the more questions you will be introduced to and will be able to recognize on test day.
4. Start Preparing Early – The earlier you start, the more flexible your schedule can be. If you take a practice test and realize that you have a lot to study with limited time, you may feel anxious and have a difficult time studying. Also, time constraints may not allow you to prepare effectively.
5. Don’t Sacrifice Sleep – Some students require 8 hours of sleep, while some only require 5 or 6. Every student is different. Lack of sleep can have a serious impact on you and negatively affect your ability to prepare. Even though you put in a lot of hours studying, they may not be as effective as if you were fully awake and focused. Manage your time wisely, so you don’t have to sacrifice sleep.
We strongly recommend starting by taking a practice test. If you are ready, you can take a free practice SAT exam here.