Preparing for the ACT/SAT

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The October and November ACT/SATs are just around the corner. Now is the time to be asking yourself: “Do I really need to take either of these tests? How will they benefit me in the long run?” and “Am I prepared?”

As one alumni of Andrews Academy put it, “other than making friends and loving Jesus, the ACT and the SAT are the most important parts of high school.”

This is true. Such tests measure your readiness for college and, ultimately, decide your academic future.

They provide scholarship opportunities as well, since most colleges rely on high SAT/ACT scores to determine the amount of financial support you would receive.

With so much weighing on the outcome of these tests, it’s easy to get overwhelmed and anxious. But with enough studying, a clear mind, and the knowledge that you’ve been preparing for these tests for practically your whole life you will be able to successfully conquer any challenges either test throws at you.

While a majority of colleges accept both SAT and ACT scores, most recommend that you take both to ensure your ability to apply to the college of your choice. Nevertheless, the similar tests do differ from each other in significant ways.

SAT

The SAT is defined as a test over “critical thinking” and “problem solving.”

There are a couple fairly easy ways to study for the SAT. Both options are available on The College Board’s SAT website: http://sat.collegeboard.org/practice/sat-study-plan

There is a print study guide available for purchase through the website. It is a rather thick book, but it also contains helpful study methods such as the ten official SAT practice tests.

The second option is the SAT online study guide that allows you to practice the tests through an online teaching system.

You can also opt for the “SAT Question of the Day”, which sends sample test questions to your email allowing you to select an answer and check the accuracy.

Whether you chose one of these or both, make sure you invest enough time to make the product well worth your money and time. These tools are your best bets at studying for the actual test.

ACT

The ACT is more of a content-based test, examining your knowledge of the subjects you learned in the classroom.

To find out more ways to study for the ACT, visit their test prep page on their website: http://www.actstudent.org/testprep/

They also offer the option of a paperback test prep guide and an online guide, as well as practice tests on their website.

While they advertise an “ACT Question of the Day”, they do not have an option to have the question emailed to you. Consequently, to participate in the question of the day, you must visit their website daily.

Neither test is more important the other. So if you are taking both, neither should be allotted more time than the other on the basis of priority.

It is important to remember to remain calm during the test and to keep a positive attitude. Studying will help but so will a peaceful mindset and confidence in your capability.

Good luck!

 

 

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