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PLANNING THE MOST EFFECTIVE TEST PREP PATH

The steps to working smarter, not harder.

 

TAKE A DIAGNOSTIC EXAM

Colleges only require one of the SAT or ACT, thus the first goal is to assess, by taking a diagnostic, which path suits you best.  ​

  • SACT Diagnostic  - A hybrid of both exams, print and take this test to assess your ability on both the SAT and ACT.

  • SAT Diagnostic - Print and take this exam if you are only seeking assessment of your ability on the SAT.

  • ACT Diagnostic - Print and take this exam if you are only seeking assessment of your ability on the ACT.

  • For prompt grading, simply photo and text your bubble sheet to Jim Addeo - 518 727 7105

PLAN YOUR TEST DATES CAREFULLY

  • 2020 - 2021 SAT ACT Test dates and deadlines <<< Click this link for a look at all the possibilities first.

  • Timing is a factor in scoring success.  In what time of year do you have the most 'room on the plate' to donate to test prep?  Consider life's competing commitments such as varsity sports, AP exams, regents exams, and college visits.

  • Students typically prep for one to two months leading up their exams.

CONSIDER THE RIGHT NUMBER OF TEST DAY ATTEMPTS

Taking 2 to 3 attempts at either the SAT or the ACT is recommended for a few reasons:

  • Many colleges super-score which means that they will mix and match your best sections from multiple attempts to create an overall highest possible composite score.

  • Many students need to work out 'the bugs' with their first exam attempt before perfecting their process on a second attempt.

  • In general, the more times you swing the bat, the greater the chance you hit the home run you are looking for.

OPTIMIZE YOUR STUDY ATTACK

A truly effective study plan factors in the following points of advice:

  • Stick to one exam - Alternating between SAT and ACT prep dilutes your efforts and expends more energy than may be necessary.

  • Be consistent - Build momentum by working every week in the 1 to 2 months prior to test day rather than scatter prep here and there. 

  • Review - Advancing score lies not in taking a section, but in in remedying mistakes.  Always review and redo missed problems. 

  • Work in small chunks - An SAT reading passage takes 13 minutes.  Doing one per day makes practice (and the review) very doable.

  • Work in large chunks - To build endurance and perfect your overall process, take full timed exams especially as test day nears.