Posts Tagged ‘preparing for SATs’

8 Steps to Prepare for the ACT or SAT

8 Steps to Prepare for the ACT or SAT


As a high school junior, you’re probably starting to think about studying for the SAT or ACT. Check out these eight steps you can take to get yourself pumped and prepared for your big exam!

Give Yourself Six Weeks

When it comes to standardized tests like the SAT and ACT, many find that six weeks is a good amount of time to really buckle down and start preparing. It’s enough time to really get the hang of what you’re doing, but not such a long time that you begin forgetting things. This doesn’t mean you can’t familiarize yourself with words or problems in the meantime.

Familiarize Yourself with the Test

You don’t want to study all vocabulary and algebra for the SAT, only to find out later there’s geometry as well. Similarly, you don’t want to spend too much time studying trigonometry for the ACT and completely forget there’s a reading portion. Know exactly what’s on the test, how long it takes, and what format it’s in.

Consider a Class

Taking an SAT or ACT prep course can be one of the best things you can do for your score. Even if it’s just a three hour review class offered on a Saturday, you might want to think about grabbing some of your buddies and attending!

Find Your Best Study Method

There are dozens of materials you can use to prep for these kinds of tests on your own, and it all depends on what works best for you. Review books can be bought at book stores, flash cards can be made, and online sites can offer practice problems, explanations, and advice for the big day. Try learning from multiple sources.

Baby Steps

While you may find it helpful to take a practice test at the very beginning, just to give yourself an idea of where you are without any studying at all, you probably don’t want to start with a bunch of these the first week. Instead, spend an hour each night reviewing the material and completing problems related to that material.

Review As You Go

As you begin your second and third weeks studying for the SAT or ACT, you may want to begin adding things back in that you brushed up on your first week. Keep familiarizing yourself with what you have studied, weeks after you studied it, so you can retain everything that you’re learning!

Practice, Practice, Practice!

Unfortunately, just reading a list of vocabulary words and their definitions, or material on how to do an algebra problem will not be very helpful when it comes to test day. You will have to actually do practice problems. Get as much practice as you can and take practice tests from start to finish.

Know What You Need Test Day

Before going to take your exam, make sure you know when the exam starts, what to bring, and what rules to follow, as forgetting something simple like your school ID could prevent you from taking the test.

How to Painlessly Prep for the SAT

How to Painlessly Prep for the SATYou’ve probably heard of their existence back in elementary school, forgot all about them in middle school, only to find yourself in your freshman or sophomore English class being told that vocabulary is important because these words will be on the SATs!  As if you weren’t already busy enough trying to get a part-time job, your homework done, a varsity position, your bedroom cleaned, and enough leadership roles to make you a well-rounded potential college student! Check out these tips on how you can painlessly study for the SATs.

SAT Prep Classes

Let’s be honest.  Nobody wants to wake up early on a Saturday morning for six weeks to learn SAT material for three hours. Unfortunately, SAT classes just happen to be the very best way to prep. So if you’re going to put yourself through it, you may as well make it the best experience you possibly can by getting a whole group of your friends in on the action! Take turns car pooling, and stop for iced coffee and bagels on the way. Show up in your pajamas if you’re allowed. Go shopping or hit the park when you’re done, since everyone’s together anyway! Use this as a spring board into your weekend plans, and you’ll find yourself (for the most part, anyway) painlessly preparing!

Flash Cards

The best part about physically making the flash cards is that it can be done with your best friend by your side and a new box of Sharpies while you watch a line up of your favorite Netflix movies! Spend a whole afternoon doing it, and don’t even feel guilty about it! If crafts aren’t your thing, buy pre-made cards. The important thing is that you use them. Take ten of them with you and use them while you wait for class to start, on your ride home, while you’re standing in line at the store, or just before bed. The following day, add five more. Then another five. By using flashcards whenever you get the chance, you’re avoiding the stressful, time-consuming ritual of sitting down with a prep book and studying.

Merging It with Class

You know how great it feels when your teacher gives you the last fifteen or twenty minutes of class to work on your homework? You know that when you get home from school that day, your work is either completely done, or there’s a good dent in it? Studying for the SAT can be the same way. If your teachers don’t have SAT prep as part of their curriculum, ask if there’s a way they can fit it in at the beginning or ends of classes. Go over a real SAT problem, or familiarize yourself with an SAT word. In general, teachers want to help their students any way they can! By covering some of the material while you’re in school anyway, you’re taking a little bit off of what you would have to do when you get home!