Examinations are unpleasant experiences. I get it! Given a choice, if there were a way of bypassing it, we all would have taken that. However, there are some exams which can decide the course of your career. Consider entrance examinations one such exam. In order to appear for the entrance examination, an appropriate level of preparation needs to be taken. This article will give you an idea of SAT and SAT preparation books. It will prepare you for the test day.
Giving entrance exams, the ultimate goal is to secure maximum marks. The marks would then give the examinee returns in the form of admission to a college or a university. The higher marks give more choice as compared to lower marks. If the student is serious about getting a seat in an academic institution, then the entrance examination is a serious affair.
Table of Contents
What is SAT?
In the developing world, the aspiration is to study abroad in popular destinations like Great Britain, the USA, Australia, Canada, and many more countries. The standard test is Graduate Record Examination (GRE). This test is for admission to technical schools.
For business studies, the exam is the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT). Increasingly, many college boards are now taking both GRE and GMAT interchangeably. Even though the stream is different after admission, the test results determine the potential in a graduate who is applying.
The lesser heard version of these two common tests is SAT. SAT stands for Scholastic Aptitude Test. This test is for those seeking admission at undergraduate levels. The difference is that since students appear less for undergraduate tests, hence the number of tests taken is less compared to graduate-level entrance tests.
SAT evaluates the reading section, writing, and mathematical solving abilities of the student. The paper is set for high school students who wish to enter a college, and the test is meant to check the aptitude of the candidate’s analytical and problem-solving skills. Language is another areas where confidence is needed to understand and answer the question types.
What Is The SAT Exam Pattern?
SAT question paper has three sub-sections:
- SAT reading
This pattern started from 2016 when SAT got a major overhaul. Each section is in the range of 200-800 points, and the final score ranges from 400 -1600 points. The written essay has points varying from 0 till 24. It varies according to the essay topic and written content review.
The essay remains a separate component. Its score is not registered on the total 1600 points. There is no negative marking for wrong answers but do not that all carry equal weight unless specified.
The tests for the SAT are in multiple-choice questions. There will be four options; three incorrect and one correct option to choose from.
How Should You Prepare For SAT?
Depending on the type of student, there are many test-taking strategies to opt for. It is best to first do a candid self-assessment. Then create a time-table or a plan on how you are going to achieve the score.
Although it depends on the type of student, the amount of preparation taken – usually, anyone have to prepare for a couple of months of practise. Tentatively it could range from 90 – 120 hours, depending on the type of score you’re targeting. The official SAT study guide is a good place to start.
What Is A Good Score For SAT?
Again, the ‘good score’ for SAT is dependent on the institution you are applying for. The overall average score is 1000 points. What you score above that is which school you’re targeting for admission. If your score is between 1440 to 1580, then most Ivy league schools will accept marks in that range. Better to check with the school’s SAT requirements, as they change it every year.
Why Do You Need SAT Preparatory Books?
SAT preparation books can act like your friend whom you can trust for taking the test. It is an old school way of preparing for the entrance test. If you prefer the free online SAT practice tests, you will get plenty of choices. Beware that it is free and most likely will have no accountability on the guidance provided. You can either choose to trust them or purchase an SAT premium subscription from a website.
Buying and sticking to SAT prep books is a safer bet. You can even download some additional materials from the publisher’s website for that book if they are offering any. Do note that not all of them provide that, so it’s best to thoroughly check while buying it.
A good book will help you plan according to your needs, the flexibility to re-read an unclear topic, and hone your reading and writing skills. It will have ample practise problems to improve your problem-solving skills in mathematics.
THE BEST BOOKS FOR SAT PREPARATION
Getting the right test prep books is important, but it can get tricky. You should know what you want from the book, and depending on your area of focus, the books will serve your academic needs accordingly.
If your weak area is mathematics, it would be beneficial for the candidate to get a book where the major focus is mathematical equations.
Here’s a compilation of top SAT preparation books with a review of them.
The College Board’s Official SAT Study Guide:
This was the number one SAT guide until 2016. Now you will find all of its contents online. The College Board has shown its commitment to transparency by providing free online SAT practice materials, and they’re also promoting their partnership with Khan Academy with video explanations to go along with official questions).
The Princeton Review Cracking the SAT, 2020 Edition:
The book is a pointer for those aspiring to join Princeton University. Following it will give you an overall concept of rules related to grammar, discrete algebra, and how to manage your time during the answer session. It has an online component if you have finished the review cracking the SAT.
SAT Prep Black Book, 2nd Edition:
SAT Prep Black Book is highly recommended for its strategies and test advice. The SAT Black Book, as it’s called, authored by Mike Barrett, has taken the time to understand the test with good insight. He points out the different types of questions and teaches tips, like how to recognize tricky wording and distracting answer choices.
McGraw-Hill Education SAT Elite 2020:
This is the book to choose if you want to take your mathematical concepts to the next level. It has extremely strong concepts, and the students who wish to strengthen their maths, this book will pay you dividends. It has eight full-length practice tests, including one diagnostic test. A very helpful book for guidance as it breaks down the complexity into simple linear systems.
Barron’s SAT, 29th Edition:
Though Barron’s has been criticized for recycling practice questions from its older versions rather than creating new SAT content, the book contains four full-length practice tests, along with two more full length online practice tests.
Kallis’ SAT Pattern Strategy:
Students as well as teachers praise this book for offering a practical and realistic look into SAT exams. This book gives six full-length practice tests, adding up to around 24 hours of practice testing. It gives basic fundamental knowledge of reading, writing, and maths. It will sharpen your analytical skills by showing how to tackle various question types.
To Sum Up:
To put it bluntly, SAT is never to crack. Each test section is tricky. Plus, some questions will really put your understanding and deduction skills to the test.
But, hey, that’s the fun part of it too. When you actually work hard and make proper use of all those SAT prep books, mock test papers, web study materials, and so on. And with that continually endeavour to improve upon your baseline SAT mock scores, you will have (a rather cool time) working through those testing SAT questions.
Perhaps, it’s why even the top-ranked colleges/universities trust SAT for its apprentice admissions.
So, prepare yourselves for the SAT. In addition, if your goal is to reach your dream university, then hopefully, these SAT preparation books will come in handy.
Following them will add an extra dimension to your preparation and help you pass the exam with high scores.