SAT test prep is an essential part of the college application process, but test preparation does not need to be as arduous as we are made to believe. Working with a private tutor who is able to customize the curriculum and personalize the instruction to use examples and anecdotes that relate to the student will make the tutoring more engaging and interesting. As the following article states, SAT test preparation is necessary, but it doesn’t have to be boring.
Jared Friedland has taken the SAT more than 20 times in his quest to uncover the secrets behind the college entrance exam.
The 37-year-old Ivy League graduate is the founder of Catalyst Prep, a Los Angeles-based test preparation company that uses humor and pop culture to make studying for the dreaded SAT and ACT tests more fun.
Want to remember what a parabola looks like? Just think of teen idol Justin Bieber’s conically-shaped head, said Friedland, a former Hollywood television writer.
“Learning how to ace these tests doesn’t have to be a boring endeavor,” Friedland said.
To help Las Vegas students, Friedland shared 10 of his best test-taking tips:
Start preparing early
Friedland advises students to take both the PSAT (the practice SAT exam) and the PLAN (the practice ACT exam) during their sophomore year of high school. That way, students can see what the tests are like, and see which test they are better suited for.
“It’s sort of like an X-ray,” Friedland said. “It’s a great analytical tool that gives you a tremendous overview of the SAT or ACT for a very reasonable price.”
The ACT is a curriculum-based test that measures students’ English, math, reading, science and writing skills. On the other hand, the SAT is more of a reasoning test that measures a student’s logic and thinking skills.
The ACT is more popular among high school students because it is more closely aligned with the high school curriculum. The SAT is more tricky, because it often has “trap answers,” varies the order of its sections to prevent cheating and penalizes guessing.
Students who are more math- and science-oriented may do better on the ACT, because it has more questions on those subjects, Friedland said. The SAT, which doesn’t have a science section and is only one-third math, is better suited for students who like to solve puzzles and memorize vocabulary, he said.
Despite the differences, Friedland said he is seeing more students — especially in neighboring California — taking both exams and submitting their best score to colleges.