Get Ready for Standardized Tests This Spring with Test Prep Tips and Practice Guides
The SAT this Saturday will be the first standardized test of 2014, and for many high school juniors it will kick off a spring semester of heavy test-prep.
ACT and SAT scores are a critical factor in college admissions, and while test scores alone do not determine whether a student is admitted or not, they do play a role in the overall evaluation of your college application.
We advise students to start preparing for these tests early and to take multiple, timed practice tests in the weeks leading up to the actual testing date.
If you’re unsure which test is right for you, learn the basics of both the ACT and SAT, and take a practice tests for each under realistic conditions. The results of these practice tests should give you an idea of which test is a better fit for you.
For those who know which test they’re taking this spring and need help prepping, here are some good practice resources and tips for the ACT and SAT:
- Not sure where to start in your test prep? The SAT Study Plan is a good first stop. While the “plan” is general, it provides some good resources to help you kick off your test-prep. For a real, in-depth test-taking plan and schedule, be sure to talk with your counselor or tutor about what you need to be doing in the weeks or months before the test to prepare.
- Both the College Board and the ACT offer practice questions to help students prepare for the exams. This is a great way to get practice material straight from the source.
- College Board also offers a full SAT practice test for free online (and also a printable version).
- If you’re taking an SAT Subject Test, College Board also offers practice questions for each of the 20 Subject Tests with detailed answer explanations.
- Since these tests are timed, strategy and overall test-taking efficiency is important. The ACT provides some good test taking tips for the multiple choice sections, as well as tips for the writing portion.
- In the days leading up to the test, keep your brain exercised with official daily practice questions for either the SAT or the ACT. If you prepped well in the weeks leading up to the test, you shouldn’t need to cram the week of. Stay sharp with practice questions but don’t exhaust your brain before the big day.
- The week of the ACT or SAT can be nerve-wracking, so here are some tips to help you stay organized and prepared.
- Also, make sure you know what to bring and what not to bring on test day.
While this isn’t an exhaustive list of all resources, it’s a good place to start for official tips and practice questions straight from the people who make the tests. What other resources have you found helpful when preparing for the ACT and SAT? Tell us in the comments below!