The MathSP SAT & PSAT Bridge Program can help you master these 7 tips… and more!
1. Develop a study plan.
Once you have registered for the PSAT or SAT and have a test date confirmed, develop a study schedule. Plan what you are going to study on a particular day, when you will study, where you will study, how long you will study and your goals for each day. Stick to your plan.
2. Review key foundational concepts.
A thorough review of the concepts you have learned in your arithmetic/pre-algebra, algebra, geometry, and trigonometry/pre-caluclus classes is very important! It is essential to have a strong foundation and understanding of key terms and equations before you begin applying this knowledge to the SAT Math Test problems. Similarly, a thorough review of grammar rules will help you tremendously in preparation for the Writing and Language Test.
3. Identify areas of weakness.
Keeping your strengths in tact, focus on turning your weaknesses into strengths.
4. Practice, Practice, Practice!
Similar to anything in life that you have mastered such as learning a new language or playing a sport or musical instrument, learning how to conquer the SAT requires time, diligence, and dedication. It takes hard work and a lot of practice to become fluent in a new language or to become a competitive swimmer. Similarly, it takes hard work and practice to master the concepts, wording, and timing required for the SAT.
5. Simulate a real testing environment when studying.
You will have 4 hours 7 minutes to complete the SAT (2 hours 45 minutes for the PSAT/NMSQT). Treat your study time as if you are taking the real exam. Block out all distractions, limit interruptions, and focus throughout your study hours. This will be good training for the real exam.
6. Time yourself.
The SAT is divided into 5 sections. Click here to see a breakdown of the sections and the time allotment. You will have less than one and a half minutes per question. Time is of the essence, so identify the shortest method to get to the correct answer. For example, for the Math Test, sometimes solving a problem algebraically is the quickest way to get to the answer. Other times, using a strategy such as Pick-A-Number or Back-Solve is the quickest method. For the Reading Test and the Writing and Language Test, use approaches that will help you to read actively and stay engaged with the passages.
7. Take as many full-length practice tests as possible.
Practicing the entire test from start to finish in a realistic testing environment is good practice for the real exam. Most students (and adults!) have trouble focusing for an extended period of time. Practice getting into your zone and blocking out distractions. Practice sitting in the same chair at a desk for 4 hours. Practice keeping your momentum consistent from beginning to end. This will help considerably when you take the real exam.