A few weeks ago I talked about the advantages of taking the SAT. Now that you have made the decision to sign your student up, let’s talk about the best way to start preparing for the SAT.
How should my student prepare for the SAT?
Your student should be at ease with the new SAT as it focuses more on what they do in class every day. The obscure SAT vocabulary that we, as parents, grew up with are gone! And, there isn’t a penalty for guessing wrong, meaning they should take that chance and guess because they won’t lose points. The content of the test is more familiar and straightforward.
Should I hire a private tutor to do test preparation activities?
There is no need! Official SAT Practice on Khan Academy is 100% free and personalized for each student. The College Board (the makers of the SAT) teamed up with Khan Academy created an online study platform with thousands of practice questions with instant feedback, video lessons, practice tests, study tips, and more! A recent study shows that students who practice for 20 hours on Khan Academy gained an average of 115 points from the PSAT/NMSQT to SAT compared to those students who did not use Official SAT Practice. 115 points is a big deal and, for some kids, what would secure a place at their dream school.
Everyone I know is hiring expensive tutors for entrance exams. Are you sure a free program is best?
It’s the only officially endorsed way to practice for the SAT because it was created by the makers of the SAT with Khan Academy. More than 5 million students have signed up for Official SAT Practice. You can’t argue with that!
How does the Khan Academy test prep work?
Your student will start by sharing either his or her PSAT scores or taking the diagnostic quizzes on the site. Khan Academy will pinpoint the skills that are most critical to work on. Working at his or her own pace, Official SAT Practice will provide guided lessons and quizzes to help your student prepare for success on the SAT. Students can set up their own practice schedules and even get reminders of when to practice!
Test day nerves are real. How can I help my student stay calm throughout all this?
Just like in any sport or musical instrument he or she may play, practice really helps build confidence. The more time you can devote to working through Official SAT Practice on Khan Academy the better. Even 15 minutes a day can make a difference. And, remember: test scores are just one part of the application process. Remind your student that colleges also look at essays, GPA, coursework, extracurricular activities and recommendations to get a well-rounded picture of each prospective student.
Disclosure: This post is part of a sponsored blog campaign I am working on the next few months with The College Board and OM Media Group.