Getting into college takes more than high grades and a substantial list of extracurricular activities. Students who plan to further their education are usually required to take the Scholastic Aptitude Test, more commonly referred to as the SAT.
To help students prepare for this exam, College Board, the organization that creates and grades the SAT, created a practice SAT site that personalizes training for students. The site includes eight official full-length practice tests with study and test taking tips, tailored practice suggestions based off of PSAT results, thousands of practice questions and video lessons, and constant feedback on progress. The opportunity was created in conjunction with Khan Academy, a non-profit only study resource.
Sarah-Joy Somarriba, higher education academic and career advisor at the Center for Student Success and Services, said the new training program will help ‘even out the playing field’ so all students can effectively prepare for the SAT.
“One-on-one tutoring can be kind of pricy so not everyone has access to it,” she explained. “[College Board saw] that people who devote at least 20 hours every week [to studying] increase their score by 100 points on average.”
With the new site, students will receive personalized instruction that they can complete at times best for them, such as during study hall at school or on weekends. Students who are simultaneously being tutored by CSSS can take practice results to their tutors to further their test preparation.
Somarriba said students should take the SAT two to three times because most of the time, scores increase as students become more comfortable with the test’s structure.
“The SAT is an endurance test; it’s a couple of hours,” she explained. “Most students are not used to testing for hours on end, so they have to train mentally. … You need that coaching to help get you to that level.”
She recommended that students start practicing as early as possible, taking the PSAT during freshman and sophomore years to prepare for the official test junior year. Ideally, students should have their official scores for college applications by December of their senior years to meet college deadlines and qualify for programs and financial aid.
“The earlier you start, the less stressful it all is because by the time you’re in your junior year, you know the drill,” Somarriba said.
In addition to SAT practice, the new site also provides assistance for other subjects. Upon signing up, students can select different subjects, including math, science and engineering, computing, economics and finance, and more. They can even receive personalized instruction for other exams, including the MCAT, GMAT, IIT JEE, and NCLEX-RN.
Students can meet with advisors for further assistance. For more information or to sign up, visit satpractice.org or contact CSSS at HigherEd@semtribe.com or 954-989-6840.