In today's world of college admissions, it is getting increasingly difficult for high school seniors to get accepted into the college of their choice. University admissions staff look at a number of different criteria in determining whether a student gets accepted to their school or not. Among these criteria are: high school grades, SAT / ACT scores, extracurricular activities while in high school, public service and writing samples. The SAT or Scholastic Aptitude Test is by far one of the most important elements in achieving admission. High school seniors and their parents should make it a priority for the applicant to take as many SAT prep courses and practice tests as they can improve their test scores. Here are the top 10 tips to improve your performance on these tests.
1. Take practice tests. This tip is very important. Test takers that go into an SAT test cold are more likely to score lower than those students that had experience taking practice tests. The more practice tests that you take will only improve your learning and give you the experience you need on the real thing.
2. Take SAT / ACT prep courses. It is always good to sign up and take at least one set of test prep courses from an expert. These courses are designed to accelerate the student's learning curve and focus primarily on the vocabulary, math and writing sections that are essential to scoring higher on the test. Real examples are used and this helps the student sentences the important concepts and gives them a better knowledge base when they are entering the real deal.
3. Take the SAT / ACT multiple times. If you do not receive the score that you were looking for on a test, schedule and take the test over again. Remember, the more tests that you take typically improves your test score. Also, you can use the best scores on each of the sections to combine your best overall score.
4. Learn the section directions in the practice tests. The student should know all of the directions of each section before they take the real test. You do not want to waste time reading directions when you could use that time for answering more questions.
5. Answer the easy questions first. Typically the easy questions come first and they become progressively harder as you move through the test. Since this is a timed test and you only have so much time to complete each section, you want to answer the easy questions or the questions that you know first and then pompone the more difficult questions for later. Be sure and mark the questions you skipped so that you can easily spot them when you are ready to tackle them.
6. Do not spend too much time on one question / problem. All questions count the same so the student should not labor over a difficult problem more than one minute. If you can not get the answer or do not understand the question, move on to the next one. Skip the hard questions where you have no idea. You will not be penalized.
7. Educated guessing is okay. If you can rule out a couple of the alternative and you have a pretty good idea of what the answer is, then it is best to go with your educated guess.
8. Use your test booklet as scratch paper. The student is allowed to write in the test booklet so if you need to do math problems or write notes on a question, it is okay to do so. Also, use your pencil to mark the questions that you have skipped so that you can easily spot them later.
9. Watch you time on the essay. You should use fifteen minutes to write the essay and five minutes to review and edit it. The essay should be 250-300 words and be composes of an introduction, body and conclusion. At the beginning of the essay, read the total assignment to understand the issue completely. You can use the word "I" in the essay because this is your perspective.
10. Get plenty of sleep the night before. The student should have a quiet evening the night before the test and get to bed early. A rested student thinks and performances better than a tired one. Strive for at least eight hours of sleep the night before the test.
There you have it, the top top tips for improving your score on the SAT score. If you follow these tips, you will definitely improve your score and will on your way to the college of your choice.