The SAT is an optional college prep exam that tests your writing, reading, and math knowledge skills. It gives you some insight into what colleges are right for you. It’s best if you study a couple of times a week for a month or two and get a copy of the SAT Prep book. That way you have a better chance of getting into more prestigious colleges. Stressing over the SAT will just get in the way of concentrating on the exam.
Do the SAT scores really predict success? Most studies show very minimal correlation between the scores and the first year college grades. Only about 10 – 20% of the variation in their first year’s GPA can be explained from the score. In my opinion, I don’t mind taking Standardized tests but, I don’t think well of how it determines your future. It’s too much pressure on one test and a certain number shouldn’t determine one’s intelligence.
When you start the test you will see that the questions are very simple, you just have to know how to answer them. The essay assesses your ability to develop a point of view on a topic and the ability to support your view with good reasoning skills. You should also be aware of time and how to manage it because, each question should take about 30 – 60 seconds in order to complete the test in time. There are ten sections but, each section gives you less than 30 minutes, including the essay.
In March 2016, the new SAT will be used and you won’t need an essay anymore. It now corresponds with high school curriculum and better reflects what students learned. There is no longer a penalty for guessing and there are 4 choices instead of 5. Overall the new test is completely different compared to the original.
The best time to take the test is during the end of your junior year or the beginning of your senior year because colleges begin looking for your scores around the end of the year by Christmas and that is also the time when everyone begins to apply.