Prioritizing study time for the SAT is a must. There are numerous topics to cover and most students’time has many other demands placed on it. In order to make the most of your time you need to balance spending SAT study time on strengths and weaknesses.
Finding Strengths and Weaknesses
First you have to discover your strengths and weaknesses. There is a big difference between perceived strengths and weaknesses and actual strengths and weaknesses. For example: A student may love math and feel very confident about their math skills. However, they may not have covered the math concepts on the SAT in their coursework yet. At the same time, they may not feel as comfortable with writing skills, but they have already covered the material necessary to be able to write a skilled essay.
The best way to discover strengths and weaknesses is to take practice tests. Practice tests reveal in a practical way what material needs more attention and what material students already know well.
You will want to spend the most focused attention on the areas you did not score well on during the practice test. Plan to spend specific time studying and practicing math concepts or working to learn vocabulary. These are hours during the week when you can sit down and only work on SAT study.
It is also important to not let your strengths fall by the wayside. First, everyone can use improvement even on his or her strengths. Second, when facing the anxiety of a test, material that at one time felt very familiar may become unclear. The more you have practiced, the more confident you will be on test day.
Strength material is great for review. Study your strengths during free time throughout the day. This material is perfect for the hour of time you have between soccer practice and dance class, or the few minutes you have when you get to class early. There are always little moments that you have during the day to review material, go over flashcards or work a few practice problems. Your areas of strength require less focus, but coming back to them regularly will help you solidify these subjects in your mind.
Take the practice test again and again. Each time evaluate whether or not your studies are helping you to improve. If you are not improving your scores, you may need to change your strategy, find a different method for learning the material or turn your attention toward different subjects. Taking the practice test is the best way to measure how you are doing, improve your test taking skills and overcome anxiety on test day.
Not only will taking practice tests help map out your skills, but it is also a way of studying in and of itself. US News reminds students that taking a five-hour test is far beyond the amount of time any student has taken a test before. Just like in sports, the article states, the mind needs to build up stamina to stay focused that long. Taking practice tests will help you learn how to focus and concentrate for the significant amount of time required for the SAT.
Mr. Test Prep Methods
This is our method at Mr. Test Prep. We practice taking the exam and then we visit trouble areas. We talk about test taking strategies and how to focus on the subject matter that requires the most attention. We offer ample opportunities to take the practice test in a setting very similar to the real thing and then offer individualized study strategies according to each student’s needs.
An Individual Plan
Every student is an individual. Everyone has different strengths and weaknesses, different areas of comfort and confidence and even different material they have already covered in coursework. There is no one right way to study for the SAT. The important thing is to study according to your needs and go into the exam prepared and confident.
Mr. Test Prep strives to prepare students with his San Carlos SAT Test Preparation program. When students engage in his San Carlos SAT Test Preparation program their scores reflect the hard work and dedication put forth. Call Mr. Test Prep today and be prepared!