Saturday, 15 November 2014

How I Improved 200 points on the SAT! :)

*In the tune of Rude by Magic!* "Saturday morning, jump out of bed and take a test soon..."

For college, all high school students need to take the SAT. While there are test-optional schools, most colleges (especially the more selective ones) require you to take a standardized test or two. In this post, I'll tell you how I improved 200 points on the SAT and how you can too! I got a score above 2250 and since I took it twice, my superscore (sum of highest individual sections) is above 2300.

#1 - Start memorizing more vocabulary:
Those 19 sentence completion questions can be pretty difficult if you don't know what the words mean. Most of the time, the sentences aren't really that hard and you can even guess what the word to be put in the blank means but you just don't understand the options! Vocabulary is also really important to know for the comprehension sections because certain types of questions - such as tone/mood ones - often require you to know what certain words mean. For instance, you may know that the mood is happy, but the SAT would much rather give you a more complicated word. So start memorizing vocab! Flashcards work well when it comes to memorizing vocab! Quizlet is great because you can test yourself too!

#2 - Learn how to eliminate options: 
Critical reading tends to be a harder section for most and most of the time, the hardest section to improve in. However, you can still do it! I went from a score in the high 500s to one in the low 700s. What helped me the most (along with vocab) was learning how to make the most of reading the passage and being able to confidently eliminate options. When I read passages, I liked to mark certain lines that I thought were important and also mark any line references. Then while answering the questions, I would go through each of the options and try to eliminate them. I could usually 3 out of 5, but picking between the last two was the hard part. I generally split each of the options into 2 parts and then tried to determine which ones had more support from the passage.

#3 - Study more essay examples and know how to tweak them:
For the essay on the SAT, you need to have an example bank from you can use one or two examples to support your thesis. A good example that supports your essay can really get you a double digit score. So, pick some good examples from various topics - technology, success, etc. Also make sure you know how to tweak them according to the given prompt. In order to do this, you need to know your example inside out!

#4 - Practice math:
Once you've brushed up on basic algebra, you need to practice. Take timed sections - this will help you work faster and more efficiently on the actual test day!

#5 - Go through grammar rules and know how they are used:
Once you've read through the basic grammar rules, practice questions and take note of how they are tested. Make sure you don't over think the "No error" questions by saying that you think there needs to be a certain rule, when in fact, there doesn't have to be. Once you practice doing a lot of questions, you will notice certain patterns in the way the SAT tests you!

That's how I improved on the SAT! Hope this post helped you! I will do another post about resources/books you can use to study for the SAT!

Thanks a TON for reading!  Make sure to subscribe/follow my blog (links below) so you know when I post next! Thanks! :)

-Kavya :)

*Disclaimer: This post is not sponsored/affiliated with any brands. All opinions are my own! :)*

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