Friday, October 08, 1999

Tips on taking the SAT

        If you are taking the SAT tomorrow, here are 10 tips on doing your best:

        • 1. Be equipped. Gather everything you'll need the night before (and don't forget the fresh batteries for the calculator).

        • 2. Don't cram. You've worked hard. The best thing to do the evening before the test is to get a good night's sleep.

        • 3. Dress in layers. The climate in test centers can vary from saunalike to frigid. Be prepared for both extremes and everything in-between. You need to be comfortable to do your best.

        • 4. Arrive early. You may want to scope out your test location before test day to ensure that you know where you're going. Getting to the test should be the least of your concerns.

        • 5. Don't spend too much time on one question. Each question is worth the same number of points. If a question is confusing or too time-consuming, don't lose your cool. Instead, move ahead. You can come back to hard questions if you have time at the end of a section.

        • 6. Don't look for unscored questions/sections. The experimental section on the SAT is well-camouflaged. Do your best on every question, that way, you're covered.

        • 7. Keep track of where you are in a section. On the SAT, obvious answer choices early in a set may be correct. Obvious choices near the end of a set are often not correct.

        • 8. Guess aggressively. If you don't know an answer, don't leave the question blank or guess randomly. Eliminate choices you know are wrong, then make an educated guess from the remaining options. If you can eliminate even one answer choice then it pays to guess on the SAT.

        • 9. Be careful filling in the answer grid. Make sure you're filling in answers next to the right numbers.

        • 10. Relax. Your attitude and outlook are crucial to your performance. Be confident.

        — American School Counselor Association

Test season opens for college-bound
- Tips on taking the SAT
Familiarity with SAT helps test-takers

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