Tag Archives: general study tips

Should I Study SAT Vocabulary?

How am I ever going to finish memorizing these 1000 vocabulary words for the SAT?  Is this even important for the SAT??? The SAT vocabulary used to be a large part of SAT prep. After all, if you could confidently memorize all those SAT words, you could have a perfect score on the SAT vocabulary section. Yet, nowadays, with analogies and antonyms gone from the SAT, studying for the SAT vocabulary only become directly important for the Sentence Completion part under Critical Reading. It seems that vocabulary has become less important in the SAT.



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How Many Times Should I Take the SAT?

I’ve often heard things like, “Oh man…I missed my target score of 2300 by 20 points, should I retake the SAT to get the score I want?” or “The second time I took the SAT, my score improved by 50 points, should I try taking the SAT a third time?” Some students believe that they have nothing to lose by taking the SAT multiple times until they have achieved their ideal score, or gotten too tired of it. Yet, aside from the 4 hours each time you take the test, registration fees, and emotional and mental health, there are other factors why there is a limit to how many times you should take the SAT.



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Studying Root Words: Your Favorite Works of Fiction are Rooted in Root Words

Use some of your favorite fictitious words to unlock real words' meanings.

Use some of your favorite fictitious words to unlock real words’ meanings.

Many of our favorite authors use their knowledge of root words, Old English, and Germanic and Romantic languages to create meaningful names for fictitious people, places, and things. An understanding of words parts is essential to developing a great vocabulary, so delve into some of your favorite science fiction and fantasy to practice finding and decoding meaningful word parts!

Read on to see how some of your favorite words from Harry Potter, Pokemon, Lord of the Rings, Game of Thrones, and Star Wars can help you on your next vocabulary quiz!

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Developing Useful SAT Essay Examples

I remember that one of the biggest challenges I faced when tackling the SAT essay was having a wide variety of examples at my fingertips. Although the SAT essay is intended to measure your writing and argumentative skills, and not your knowledge of any particular subject, it is necessary to use good examples in your SAT essay to create a persuasive argument. Many of the essay prompts given on the SAT tend to be open-ended questions with multiple perspectives one can take. Almost all of these essay prompts deal with basic moral, social and psychological issues such as the meaning of freedom or courage.



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Studying Vocabulary: If It’s Not Fun, You’re Doing It Wrong

According to a review of vocabulary acquisition research, the three most effective methods of vocabulary acquisition requires students to:

  1. connect new vocabulary with what they already know
  2. experience repeated exposure to new words
  3. use new vocabulary in meaningful ways
The king had such great washboard abs that he abdicated the throne to pursue a career in modelling!

The king had such great washboard abs that he abdicated the throne to pursue a career in modelling!

While repeated exposure echoes the philosophy behind the most traditional methods, such as vocabulary flash cards, matching games, and crossword puzzle practice, the most common methods used by students today completely neglect two of the three most essential and most fun parts of vocabulary learning.

Read on below to find suggestions for making the study of vocabulary both fun and effective by bringing connection-making and the meaningful use of vocabulary back into the equation.

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Avoiding Bad SAT Essay Examples

Often, the biggest challenge of the SAT essay isn’t poor writing, but coming up with relevant and good examples within the short 25 minutes that you are given for the essay section. Someone told me that during her SAT test, she panicked after reading the prompt because no good example came to her mind and so she made up an example using her “cat”. After the test, she realized that her example had been really far-fetched and its link to the prompt hadn’t been the most relevant. She realized that one key thing she should have prepared for was good SAT essay examples.



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Will a Calculator Help Me in the SAT?

There are a lot of misconceptions about using a calculator during the SAT. Students often wonder, is it better to use a really high-tech calculator? Or will my simple scientific calculator do the job? Will a calculator really improve my SAT score? The first important thing to note is that every mathematics question on the SAT can be solved without a calculator. So if you are unfamiliar with using a calculator during math tests, don’t try to force the issue during the SAT. Just solve those math problems the same way you’ve been doing them. Additionally, although using a calculator will not improve your SAT score, using a calculator may be helpful for some questions and also help you check your solutions more quickly.



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6 SAT Prep Mistakes

Preparation is key to any test, right? So all the prep I’ve been doing for my SATs must be helping me somehow, right? This is actually untrue! Although preparation is important for the SATs, there are actually mistakes we can make and things we should not do to prepare for the SATs.


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Figuring out the SAT Math Sections

Math is a subject that, although intimidating at first with the numerous complex formulas and numbers, is actually probably the easiest to prepare for amongst the three SAT sections. Yet, most students fear the SAT Math section the most and often don’t quite know the different strategies for handling the different types of math questions that appear in the SAT. However, fret not! This post will help to break it down for you and provide you with some crucial strategies to tackle SAT Math.


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A Daily Approach for the SAT

Oh man…my SAT is in a month’s time and I haven’t started preparing for it. In addition to my normal school work, extracurricular and the hundred other things I have to do, how am I supposed to even start preparing for perhaps one of the most important tests in my life? Unsurprisingly, with most of the SAT dates during the school term, albeit during a Saturday, many students see the SAT as another enormous challenge placed smack center amidst all the other commitments they already have. Many of these high school students are already barely sleeping 6 hours and are stressed out from trying to achieve high exam scores/class rankings.


Preparing for the SAT thus seems like an additional insurmountable challenge, where you face off thousands of students from all over the country who will contribute to your eventual score and ranking. Sometimes, the seeming difficulty of the SAT causes students to put off preparing for it till much later because “it just seems too hard and tiring to start right now”. Yet, taking a daily approach for the SAT is probably the best thing you can do to prepare for it!

  • Make it a point not to take days off! This is the first most important thing you have to take note of! Even if you only have 10 minutes on the bus or right before you fall asleep, study 10 new vocabulary words everyday and that tiny bit of work every single day will add up to a great deal in the long run.



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