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09/04/2019

Help me prepare for the SATs/ ACTs?

QUESTION
Help me prepare for the SATs/ ACTs?
I have one year to study, I want to set up a schedule that will get me studying regularly. I really want to maximize my score. I did poorly on my PSATs and I would like to improve.

I want to take both the SAT and the ACT, I have a pretty good idea of what is on the SAT, but I am not sure about the ACT.

for both tests I would like to know-
1) What is on them (main sections)

2) What kind of information in those sections (i.e. are there questions on parts of speech, vocab, chemisty, biology physics… ect)

3) How should I go about studying these mass amounts of info? I have recourses I just do not know how to apply them to good standardized testing study habits.

4) What is the best practice books/ websites/ refrences? I have a copy of the college board’s SAT study guide, but are there better ones?

I also have a set of Barron’s SAT flashcards which look like a good resource.

I really appreciate all your help!

If you have any questions I will put the answers under edits.

ANSWER
First regarding ACT vs SAT:

SAT Test Advantages

One quarter of the Critical Reading section questions are based on vocabulary, so those students who are strong in vocabulary and reading will perform better in this format.
The SAT math section reviews mostly 9th and 10th grade math, with a bit of reasoning concepts. This is great for students who haven’t yet mastered trigonometry or calculus.
Each of the 10 sections of the SAT test is 25 minutes or less. This is friendly for the student who likes short, quick bursts of attention.
SAT Test Challenges

The SAT penalizes ¼ point for each question answered incorrectly.
This test is also a long one – 3 hours and 45 min. The mental stamina required can be grueling.
For students that do not enjoy the essay writing portion, this test begins with the timed essay.
ACT Test Advantages

The ACT test format is simpler than the SAT with only 4 sections, the longest being 1 hour.
The ACT is only 3 hours long, which is not quite as mentally challenging as the SAT test.
The ACT doesn’t penalize for questions answered incorrectly.
ACT Test Disadvantages

The ACT Features a Science section that might be more difficult for students that haven’t been exposed to reasoning with graphs and numbers. The Math section includes trigonometry concepts. Some students find this format challenging if they haven’t prepared for this. The ACT English section challenges skills and aptitude in colons, hyphens, commas and other grammar. This can also be challenging for students without formal training.

Next, all you need is that College Board SAT book and a comprehensive review. You can get free access to curriculum, flash cards, and sat practice tests at http://domesatreview.com.

Keep practicing! Preparation is all you need.