Test Prep Tuesday: #1

May 2, 2017

Improving at Standardized Tests

One of the most efficient ways to improve at anything is to track your progress. If you are a weightlifter trying to get stronger, you track how much weight you are lifting. On standardized tests, similarly to weightlifting, you need to track your score improvements on practice tests. Additionally, you need to approach practice in an efficient manner. 

There are three different ways to do this:

1. Tracking your overall score on the SAT or ACT

a. This is recommended for students who are scoring below a 22(ACT) or a 1100(SAT). At these scores, it is much easier to improve your overall score without focusing on refining your skill in specific sections.

2. Tracking your score by section on the SAT or ACT and repeatedly practicing specific sections

a. This is recommended for students who have blatant weaknesses on the test. For example (ACT): If a student scored a 30 on every section but math (and scored a 20 on math), it is much more efficient for them to focus on math to improve their overall score.

3. Tracking small techniques and content execution by section

a. This technique is recommended for people who keep making the same mistakes repeatedly. Instead of approaching a section with a goal score, try approaching a section with a smaller goal in mind. Instead of saying “I will get a 28 on this math section,” say, “I will get through this entire math section without making a careless mistake” or “I will get through this entire math section without missing a trigonometry problem.”

Author

Giovanni Zinzi