SAT Exam Survival Guide

Scrambled Eggs è una scuola di inglese a Milano. Specializziamo nei corsi di preparazione dell’esame. Offriamo corsi preparazione sat, ielts, toefl, first certificate, e molto di più qua a milano. Il seguente post è per coloro chi studia per l’esame sat a milano e in tutto l’italia.

It’s the day before the SAT! Help! What do I do?

You’ve put in the work, done a number of practice tests, maybe even taken a class. The big day is here sooner than you imagined. What do you do? Do you put in a few more hours of practice? Do you give your brain a break?

SAT Exam Preparation

First of all, stop with the practice tests. You’re stressing yourself out. If you’re English is not at a native-speaker level, forget about it. You won’t master English in the next 24 hours. Prepare yourself emotionally instead. The last thing you need is those pesky emotions getting in the way of your success. The fact is, even if you’re calm and collected now, they might just get you on test day. Let’s prevent that from happening.

 

Here’s the key: Don’t try to learn anything new. Instead, organize everything you already know.

 

The SAT is a big test, and, as with any test, the pressure can really get to you. It happens to the best of us. We’ve taken loads of tests in our lives. It’s agonizing knowing that a few hours may represent who you are (at least on paper) – whether to your country, state, future employer or school. Getting a good score on the SAT can be the difference between getting into the big shot school or having to settle for your fourth choice university. Even years from now, your SAT score may even come up over drinks with friends. The premise of it is terribly absurd. The idea that we put so much focus on this make-it-or-break-it test, a test that is hardly a reflection of someone’s intellect, into planning a student’s future is absolutely cruel. In essence, a test like the SAT is meant to separate us into categories; it’s supposed to be a reflection of who we are, at least academically. Ridiculous – I know! But that’s a topic for another day.

Right now, you have to focus on the positive and for your last-minute prep for that darn test.

Sometimes you put in all necessary work, spend an endless amount of time memorizing words, straining your brain, and then the fateful day arrives. And what happens? You’re blank. Numb. It’s all gone. You can’t remember anything. All that work? – poof! – right into thin air.

For moments like this, make yourself a pre-exam cheat sheet.

SAT Exam Preparation in Milan

Better put, a pre-exam “jitters be gone!” sheet. Take out a sheet of paper, open your already-finished practice tests and notes, and write down the important things. This piece of paper will be your best friend on test day. Trust me. As a super-anxious test taker myself, this trick has helped me ease my anxiety on quite a few occasions.

In fact, it’s a great test trick in general! It helps keep your mind sharp and focused, keeping you from blanking even wandering off into your own la la land. All too often, this sheet has even helped me boost my score. Think of it as a method to push all the important things into the front of your brain and all the trivial things (what time am I meeting Julie for coffee this afternoon?) to the back. Stay focused

Ready to make your cheat sheet? Your goal is to organize all of that cloud of information floating around in your head into one condensed sheet. Take out a sheet of paper and open your already-finished practice tests as well, as any notes you may have taken.

Take it slow. Keep in mind that your goal is to organize it well – “well” meaning in a way that makes perfect sense to YOU. Start with one section, say the Writing. Extract everything you think is important (and could serve as a good reminder pre-test) from the Writing Section, and limit it to one part of your cheat sheet paper.

Look at any test questions you got wrong. Is there a trend? For example, one of the things that the SAT throws at you is “neither…nor” and “either…or”. This is one that’s easy to miss. (In the “Identifying Sentence Errors” sub-section of the writing, you may happen upon “neither…or”, in which case you would have to identify it as a mistake.) Maybe you got a number of these questions wrong. In this case, write something on your sheet along the lines of “neither…nor” so that you remind yourself to keep a careful eye out for it on the test.

If you took a class, look through any notes or any hints your teacher may have given you. If you find any of them might slip your mind, write those on your sheet too. However, be sure to keep it short and clean. Don’t write in full sentences. Make it condensed. No one else will be reading this. Keep in mind that this is for your eyes only, so write for you and only you – it doesn’t have to make sense to anyone else. Is there something you have to remember about the Essay portion? Maybe just make a quick structural outline for yourself.

After you’ve gone through the Writing portion, move on to the Reading. The same idea holds true here. The SAT has a number of questions that they like to use over and over again. Write them down so that you’ll remember what to keep an extra eye out for. For example, a “parallel” sentence structure is fairly huge on the SAT; Anne was driving, talking on the phone, and she drank coffee would be Anne was driving, talking on the phone, and drinking coffee. You will find many questions that test your ability to identify parallelism problems on the test. Do you think that’ll be helpful to remind yourself before the test? Good. Write it down.

Last (but certainly not least), the Math Section. Are there repeated problems you’ve had? Maybe the fractions threw you off a couple times. If you’ve taken a few SAT tests, I’m sure you’ve realized the SAT is highly repetitive in its questions; you essentially encounter the same questions with different numbers. If there’s a question that stumped you a few times, write out an example on your cheat sheet so that you can give it a quick glance beforehand.

Pack all of your SAT test materials the night before. There’s no need to rush in the morning, grabbing everything as you’re running out the door, or even worse – forget something!

As a reminder, here are the materials that you’ll need on SAT test day:

  • Your admission ticket (which you can print here: http://bit.ly/1jB5rMv)
  • A Photo ID
  • Two sharpened #2 pencils (the SAT test cannot read pens, so leave those at home)
  • A good eraser
  • A calculator (Don’t go investing in a brand new top-of-the-line calculator the day before the test. Use the one you’ve been using, the one you’re comfortable with. If you’re not sure whether your calculator is acceptable or not, here is the SAT Calculator policy: https://sat.collegeboard.org/register/calculator-policy)
  • Extra batteries or backup equipment (You can never be too prepared!)
  • A watch
  • A snack or drink (for a quick pick-me-up during your break)

Don’t bring:

SAT Exam Preparation a Milano

  • Your cellphone
  • Your laptop or tablet
  • An MP3 player
  • A camera
  • Any recording device
  • Anything that makes noise

Also, make sure you know what time your test starts and exactly where it is. Keep in mind that you’ll have to arrive before the actual start time to check-in, so plan accordingly. Calculate the exact amount of time it’ll take you to get from your house to the test center (and maybe add on a few minutes, just in case), and set your alarm.

Lastly, be sure to get a good night’s sleep. The last thing you want is to be nodding off at your desk tomorrow.

The morning of the SAT exam, go about your usual routine. If you usually take a shower in the morning, take a shower. If you usually have coffee, have coffee. Don’t chow down on anything that will weigh you down or make your stomach hurt. If anything, avoid super sugary carbs that will give you a temporary boost, only to make you crash a few hours later. Try eating a good, protein-filled breakfast. Eggs are usually a good bet. The last thing you need is something like a pesky stomachache distracting you during your SAT test.

Ready or not, here it goes!

The world is your oyster and you’re gonna crush this test. And if you don’t, it’s all over for you – Kidding! Head out the door with your head held high and your best foot forward!

If you’re in Milan, Italy and feel that you need a quick SAT SOS crash course before your test – or maybe you simply want to talk to somebody and get your head straight – we’re here for you. Scrambled Eggs has your back. Shoot us an email for further information: info@scrambledeggsmilano.it