SAT Test Prep Guide – How to prepare efficiently?

SAT Test Prep Guide – How to prepare efficiently?

What is SAT? What should you look out for during your SAT test prep? How to prepare for the SAT test efficiently? It is something that many students will worry about, because many times the boring stillness or exhaustion of doing questions may cause restlessness in students. This article will tell you all you need to know about SAT test prep.

What is the SAT test

SAT is the acronym for Scholastic Assessment Test. It is an academic assessment test, commonly known as the American college entrance examination. SAT scores are one of the most important indicators for undergraduate applications. The SAT is divided into SAT I, the SAT Reasoning Test, and SAT II, the SAT Subject Test. SAT I is a general ability test, including Evidence-based Reading, Writing, and Math, with 800 points for each part and a total score of 1600. Writing is an optional test item and is scored separately.

SAT II is a more advanced test. The content of the test is knowledge and skills in a subject or professional field. There are five items: English, History, Language, Mathematics and Science. College admissions offices often use SAT II scores to assess a student’s degree of expertise in a subject.

Who needs to take the SAT test

Generally, students who want to enroll in an undergraduate program in the United States are required to take the SAT. Although more and more U.S. universities are making SAT an option, previous records have shown that students who submit SAT with a high score are still favored. On the other hand, it is a requirement of some other U.S. universities that students submit their SAT scores as proof of academic ability. 

Generally, students need to take the Reasoning Test, and whether to take the Subject Test depends on the requirements of the school program and the individual situation of the student. The score a student can get largely depends on how much time is invested in the SAT test prep.


SAT Time Management

  • How many times can you take the SAT exam?

For most students, taking standardized tests multiple times can effectively improve test scores. This is because taking the test multiple times can effectively reduce the psychological pressure. If students do not get their ideal scores in the first exam, they can apply for the next one and take as many times as they want until they are satisfied with their scores. This also allows students to have more time to deal with SAT test prep.

  • Make a time plan

SAT test scores are valid for two years, and students only need to ensure that the scores are within the validity period when applying to schools. For most candidates, it is recommended to start preparing for the SAT about a year before applying and take the SAT about half a year before the application begins. On the premise that the students are fully prepared, the exam time should be early rather than late.

If the first test score is satisfactory, you can devote your follow-up time and energy to preparing for other tests or writing your personal statement. If the test score is not satisfactory, you can also have enough time to take the second test. Generally speaking, the number of standardized test sessions in summer is relatively small, but at this time students will have a lot of free time due to the summer vacation. This situation makes the summer exam dates extremely sought-after.


SAT Subjects

The current SAT Subject subjects are divided into five categories: English, History, Language, Mathematics and Science. Among them, Mathematics includes Mathematics One and Two, Science includes Physics, Chemistry, and Biology, and language includes French, German, Spanish, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Hebrew, and Latin. The English section only consists of English literature one; History content includes American history and World History Two.


SAT Test Prep

Taking the SAT or ACT requires students to prepare well in advance. Students should look for a quiet and comfortable test preparation environment; on the other hand, students should choose suitable test preparation materials.

The SAT is a college board that provides candidates with a variety of materials to help prepare for the SAT and build English language skills. These materials include free sample questions, practice tests, interactive skill-building sessions, detailed answering techniques, and in-depth information on the exam. 

Among all the materials, the official book is the SAT Official Guide (commonly referred to as OG). There are quite a few apps for practicing SAT exam questions – just do a Google search and you will find them. The mock exam software provides candidates with simulated exercises that are almost identical to the real exam, helping candidates better prepare for the exam.

For students, the learning process should be continuous. Students are busy with their school work, and it is understandable that they want to relax when summer holiday is approaching. But students should also understand that problem-solving skills, strategies, and test-taking knowledge points are best achieved through repeated, continuous practice. It is reasonable for students to take some days off for leisure activities, but they must not interrupt their studies for too long.

If students are applying for admission in the fall of 2023, the time to start studying the SAT test materials should ideally start in the spring of 2022 at the latest. This will give students sufficient time to practise over and over again.

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