How to prepare for the SAT® and ACT tests

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The SAT® and ACT tests are designed to gauge your college readiness. Getting into a good college can really give you the edge in your career, but preparing for the SAT® or ACT can be a very intimidating prospect. The first thing to remember is that you don’t only have one shot at it. If your timing is right, you can write the test more than once, so relax; nerves are your worst enemy in an exam.

Get a Tutor
The second thing to consider is a tutor. Tutors are essential to success because they are able to help plan a schedule that is realistic, but will ensure that you are as prepared as you can possibly be. Tutors will also look at your study methodology. So many students are really bright, but because they have never learned effective study methods, their grades don’t reflect their true talent. A tutor can help you improve your memory and use techniques that make it easier to learn large volumes of information.

Tutors will also help you with exam techniques and how to best answer SAT® and ACT questions. Planning your exam strategy will ensure that you have enough time to answer all the questions. Most importantly, a tutor can review your knowledge and identify the missing blocks in your foundation of information and skills. Filling in these missing blocks will help you to take on anything that the SAT® exams and ACTs throw at you.

Practice Test Prep
Once you are confident in your knowledge of the basics, you need to start taking practice tests. There are a plethora of online test sites where you can look at previous test examples. These are listed below for you. Taking practice tests is essential to success. Some of the test questions are tricky and the way in which they ask questions will be very different from what you are accustomed to. This can really trip you up if you are not adequately prepared.
It’s also essential to know how marks are distributed so that you can be sure to maximize your score and spend enough time on each aspect of the answer. There is a very particular way in which to answer these questions, so make sure you practice them.

It’s also important to know that the ACT and SAT® question methodologies differ greatly. Doing well on one will not guarantee a good result on the other. This means that if you struggled with the SAT®, the way they ask the questions on the ACT might suit you better.

For the best chance at getting into a good school, it is advisable to do both tests. Just remember that even though you can take the test more than once, all of your test scores are recorded and will be available to your college entrance board.

Test Prep Sites
• ULS
Test Prep Review

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