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Minnu’s Minute: Re-taking the SAT or ACT?

It is that time of the year when you are preparing and taking your SAT or ACT exams. In addition, you are also wondering whether you should retake the exams.  Today, I want to give you some pointers as you decide whether you want to retake your SAT and or ACT.

  • If you are strong in science and mathematics rather than English, there is a higher probability for you to do better on ACT than on SAT. If you have the time, I would recommend you to take the SAT and the ACT.
  • As you evaluate retaking your SAT exam, keep the following points in mind:
    • Problem: Did you feel rushed while writing the SAT essay?

Solution: Practice writing the whole essay at home and make sure you time yourself as you practice. Understand the different strategies on writing the SAT essay to increase quality and time efficiency.

  • Problem: In the reading comprehension section, did you feel you could not finish the reading the whole excerpt?

Solution: As you practice at home, learn how to pick out the important from each paragraph and jot it down on the side of the paragraph. In this way, you do not have to go back and read the whole excerpt as you try to answer the question.  In case of long excerpts, make sure you read the excerpt before reading the question. However, for short excerpts, you can read the question first before you read the excerpt.

  • Problem: In the critical reading and the writing section, do all the answer choices look the same to you ( I will admit, it did to me!)?

Solution:  Try to guess the answer before you look at the answer choices. You might already know the aforementioned solution.

  • Problem:  And then the Math section arrives! Even though you know your concepts, you still get your answers wrong?
  • Solution: Most of the students get their answers wrong because they rush through the question and jump into solving the problem. Make sure you carefully read the question before you answer. SAT math problems might look simple however; they are designed to trick you. So, the key is to realize is that the most obvious answer choice is probably not your correct answer

You might already know what I have mentioned here, however consciously make the effort to practice the tricks at home and make it a habit before you take the test again. In addition, even if you are doing a section of the tests at a time, I recommend you to time each section as you go through it. In that way, you will get used to solving the questions under a time limit. Though, you can practice without the time limit if you are still practicing the concepts.  These pointers will help you increase your score. In addition, if you read the SAT and ACT guidebooks, they will mention more tricks and strategies to do better in your standardized test.  Always remember, smart work and practice make perfect!

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