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SAT PSAT Prep Info


2nd edition of "The Official SAT Study Guide" by The College Board.
​This book has 10 practice SATs.
Free resources (compare prices on the first link)
http://sat.collegeboard.org/practice/sat-practice-test



The SAT has different questions every time it is given.  

Some tests are released after they are given (see links for "verify scores").   

After 10 hours of tutoring, most of my students gain between 200 and 350 points.   Sometimes the first test after tutoring doesn't go well.  Then the second test may go very well or it may not.  It depends on the student.

The SAT is a language test.  Even the math section is a language test as every math problem is a word problem.  The critical reading section tests vocabulary, and the reading passages are dense, complicated college-level material.  The writing section is made up of multiple-choice questions and an essay (the SAT Essay is unlike anything most students have ever done in school, and for many reasons, it has been criticized).  The essay accounts for approximately 30% of the SAT writing score.  

SAT Math is different from school math.  
 I've had many students who had A's in their AP calculus classes but who could not do some of the simple SAT Math questions that involved percents and fractions.





During the first lesson, I like to go over the PSAT if the student took the PSAT.  The PSAT can be found online under Quickstart.  If a student has a released SAT, I can go over that.  

For almost all of my SAT/PSAT students, I use the 2nd edition of "The Official Study Guide to the SAT" (see above), which is by The College Board, the maker of the SAT and PSAT. The book is around $20 on Amazon. It has 10 practice tests, some of which are actual SAT tests.   If a student is particularly motivated, I suggest studying vocabulary books and flashcards. See my "SAT Reading List" page.

Normally, I assign a practice test or part of a practice test for homework (but homework is optional, of course).  Obviously, at the beginning the student should not time these sections. Worrying about time shouldn't become an issue until  around two weeks before the test. Clearly, the first step should be learning how to correctly answer the questions, not learning how to shave off seconds.

The student should star or otherwise mark each question that seems difficult. I prefer that students do not guess when doing homework, for obvious reasons (I hope the reasons are obvious).  After the student is finished with the test, the student should grade it carefully. The answers are at the end of each test.

During tutoring, the student and I will go question by question through all of the questions that were missed or starred. I use a grammar book by Diana Hacker, along with other resources, for the writing and reading sections.   Many SAT Math problems being designed to have multiple solutions, I love to show students different ways of doing the same SAT Math problem.  With some students, I throw in some non-SAT questions, but for the most part, I stick with The College Board book.  
Score ChoiceSAT-ACT Conversion SAT Reading ListSAT Wikipedia Article

January, May, and October SATs are released up to 5 months after the test date for those who took them.  Click on the link above.
Click the link below to access the PSAT test and your answers.
https://sat.collegeboard.org/register/sat-us-dates
SAT test dates:  
October 3rd
November 7th
December 5th