The SAT stands for Scholastic Aptitude Test and is a large determinant in one's acceptance to college. Although this may sound daunting, and it may be at times, all will go as planned, with some preparation.
The SAT stands for Scholastic Aptitude Test and is a large determinant in one’s acceptance to college. Although this may sound daunting, and it may be at times, all will go as planned, with some preparation. After interviewing some reputable seniors, and emailing all of the guidance counselors, the following is a short explanation of the SAT process.
Practice, practice, practice! That is the piece of advice heard around the world. Mrs. Siemmao said it best, “Practice! Just like anything, the more time you put in prep the better. Of course, paying attention to your courses in school, these courses are preparing you for the test! Do the practice activities in advisory, they will help you get used to the format of the test. Go to www.collegeboard.org for more free practice you can do on your own.”
The question of stress is yet another aspect of this exam. Mrs. Siemmao further explains, “Should I feel stressed? No, we are all in the same boat, stress is normal to feel, but remember your grades, your activities in and out of school are taken into account.” College is not just looking at your SAT score. In fact, according to U.S. News, “a growing number of colleges will review applicants without testing, thus enabling the readers to focus on other aspects of the application, including the essay(s), résumé of activities, and letters of recommendation. For the most highly selective colleges, these factors will ‘get you to the starting line,’ and it is the distinguishing features that can make the difference.”
After the first time, many people are not entirely satisfied with their score; however, not everyone knows precisely how to retake the test. Mrs. Siemmao says, “after the test is given in April, you can sign up again on www.collegeboard.org and take again; tests are administered monthly all over the country.” Senior student Lily says, “For English, you may want to review the literary terms. For math, you should study up on some of the things you may not remember from years past,” Lauren says,” I retook the test because I was not happy with my first score. All I did was sign up at the College Board and go wherever the test was being held at that time.
Many are also concerned with how their SAT scores make their way to the colleges of their choice. Mrs. Siemmao explains, “The score report will go nowhere unless you designate schools for it to be sent to…which we recommend you do. Even if you are unsure if you want a school to see your scores, it is good to have them sent, that way if you apply early in fall the school will already have your scores. You can take it again, and have them resent it. Colleges will ‘superscore,’ which means they will look at the highest score of each section.” Ana says, “I tried many programs such as the Princeton Review, and not necessarily study the materials but study testing habits. If you study the testing habits, you can master the Process of Elimination, or identify the short cuts in the answers so you can take the test quicker.” Kat says, “It’s very hard to prepare for the test, and she did not feel ready, so she checked out the big SAT books from the library and went through the majority of them.”
After interviewing some sensors, they illustrated what a “good score” looks like. Audry said, “1000 is solid, but anything over 1100 is what colleges are looking for.” Sam says, “1200 is what you should be aiming for, but 1000 is good.” Lily agrees, “1000 is a good score and once you hit 1250 that is a great score,” Lauren says, “A good score is based on the person, if you are not a good test taker then you should set a goal that you can reach. Everyone is different, and it depends on the person.”
What all of the seniors could agree is that taking the test will be stressful, and no one can avoid that. Nevertheless, it is what you do to prepare for the test that makes all of the difference in your score. “Get it over with, and bang it out! Ignore the stress in order to get your best score,” Ana suggests.