Preparing for the SAT

Photo via Wikimedia Commons under Creative Commons license

Gabriella Maffie, The Delphi Staff

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As the school year continues to progress, the SAT exam is being taken and re-taken by students throughout the spring months. For most juniors (and other students taking the test), it can be nerve-wracking when it comes to figuring out how to prepare for the test. With the May and June SATs rapidly approaching, here are some tips that will help you prepare:

First, take practice tests or attend SAT prep courses.  While this step may seem to explain itself, it can really help make a difference in the score you receive. The prep courses offered at Del Val really helped when learning how to go about answering certain questions, and they offered tips on how to navigate the exam. There are also numerous other options when it comes to SAT prep such as Khan Academy and other similar tutoring services. The PSAT is also a great baseline score that you can use that to determine what areas you need to focus on in order to better your score.

Get a good night of sleep the night before. Getting a good night of sleep before any major test is a huge help as your brain will be awake and able to concentrate on test day!

Eat Breakfast. While for some breakfast is not a very popular meal, I would highly recommend eating something nutritional before the test as well as drinking water or something to hydrate. Doing this will help keep you energized and attentive during the test so you can function to the best of your ability.

Make sure to bring plenty of number 2 pencils, and be sure to have a good eraser should you want to change an answer. These will also come in helpful when it’s time for scratch paper work during either the math or writing sections.  In case you don’t know, the essay is optional, so be sure to check and see if the colleges that you are applying to require that you write the essay.

Bring a snack. During the test, there will be a couple small breaks where you can stretch, use the restroom, or even eat/drink if you want. I’d recommend bringing a small snack like a granola bar and a water bottle. It is a long test, but the snack should keep you full throughout the test.

My last important tip when it comes to taking the SAT is learning to manage your time on each question. Keeping track of the amount of time you have left in each section can help you to pace yourself while answering the questions in each section.

These are only a few of many tips given about taking the SAT. The most important rule to remember is to stay confident and try not to be overly stressed. Take the test to the best of your ability. Good luck to all of those taking the SAT in the coming months!