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What's the best way to study for the SAT/ACT?

Finding the right way to study is vital for the best success. #teacher #school-counseling #tutoring

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Kris’s Answer


SAT includes Math and English .

SAT Math: Algebra 2, Geometry and a little bit of Math Analysis(Pre Calculus)

SAT English: Reading-Reading Comprehension Writing: Grammar

SAT Essay: Critical Thinking on the SAT Essay and deliver analysis on the main idea


ACT includes Math, Science, Reading and English

ACT Math: Algebra 2 and Geometry

ACT Reading: Reading Comprehension

ACT English: Grammar

ACT Essay: Paragraph+3 opinions: Deliver your opinion and analysis

SAT and ACT Math: Thoroughly review your fundamentals. To do this:

  1. Take your common core curriculum and work out each and every problem in every chapter, especially the word problems.
  2. Maintain a notebook only for formulas in each chapter. This will be a major reference for you.


Chapter 1: Formulas

Chapter 2: Formulas


SAT and ACT English:

Reading: Questions are two types broadly:

  1. Whole Passage questions like Main Idea, Tone of the passage etc.
  2. Questions that focus on details: Using the context, Inference etc.

Writing: Grammar involves a few usually tested grammar rules like Subject Verb Agreement, Parallel Structures, Modifier Placements, Appositives, Verb Tenses etc.


Reading and Writing:

  1. Read magazine articles in Literature, American History, Science and Social Studies. Ask yourself what is the main idea, who is the author, how is the author's tone.

Annotate each paragraph i.e synopsis of each paragraph in the passage.

3.Ask yourself how is the paragraph connected to the main idea of the passage.


  1. Read the question first. This step is the same for Reading too!
  2. Look into the options i.e JUST GLANCE. Find if the starting words have different verb tenses like have or had or if the starting words have different prepositions like of, for, in etc.
  3. Read the paragraph and try to understand the context.

ACT Science: This is Statistics or what I like to call Data Interpretation. You will have data: written + graphs and you need to answer questions based on the data by interpreting and deducing from the data.


  1. Do all the College Board tests for SAT and all the ACT tests for ACT.
  2. Then, look for errors. Maintain an ERROR LOG. If you can a pattern, you know you have to refine fundamentals, review and do them again
  3. Do the tests again. YOU MUST DO ALL THE TESTS BY THE TEST GIVERS( College Board SAT or the ACT)
  4. If you want to, choose any books like Barrons, Kaplan etc. for additional tests.

Hope this helps! Let me know if you need more info. Good Luck!

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Rachel’s Answer

You will need to focus on stress and time management. In order to manage stress you have to manage your time wisely. <span style="background-color: transparent;">You have to set a routine for yourself and stick to it for the most part. Once you get into the groove of a routine it will be much easier for you to manage your time and have enough time for everything you need to do (including relaxing). Make yourself to-do lists on a weekly basis, use Google calendar or a planner to keep track of events, deadlines, and due dates. In addition to setting a routine and sticking to it, plan out relaxing activities into your day. Or set aside a time, after everything is done for the day, that you can have "me" time. I have also personally found it essential to not only find time for myself but also make use of that time in a way that is best for me and my holistic wellness. I have found the HeadSpace app to be an essential tool in helping me relax and generally feel more relaxed throughout the day, Guided meditation, even if you have a busy schedule, will make you feel more at ease and relaxed throughout the day as a whole (not just when you have the time to relax and focus on that "me" time).</span>

<span style="background-color: transparent;">Set a routine.Use Google Calendar.Set aside Me TimeWrite weekly to-do lists and use a planner.Find a peaceful and restful activity that will help you feel relaxed.</span>

<span style="background-color: transparent;">Here is how to be successful in them:</span>

  1. <span style="background-color: transparent;">Stay on track - do assignments early, finish things a head of time, and be aware of all of your deadlines</span>
  2. <span style="background-color: transparent;">do all the the assignments and read all of the coursework required- do not cut corners</span>
  3. <span style="background-color: transparent;">use Google calendar to keep track of deadlines</span>
  4. <span style="background-color: transparent;">communicate with your professor early if something comes up</span>
  5. <span style="background-color: transparent;">do not be afraid to ask for an extension if you need one</span>
  6. <span style="background-color: transparent;">study, and study a lot! you don't have regular class sessions so you will need to put in more work at home.</span>
  7. <span style="background-color: transparent;">Do your best and genuinely try hard to give it your all.</span>

The best way to score high on the test is to Google search an online program or book that will help you study. Once you find an online lesson plan for success you can use it as a road map for studying. Otherwise, find a book to help you study and spend 45 mins a night reading through it and studying. Depending on when you test is, the first thing you will want to do is organize a studying schedule for yourself. Target studying certain sections of the test and divide them up by the weeks/months you have until you have to take it.

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Rebecca Beyer’s Answer

It really depends on you and how you learn best. Some people need the discipline of taking a prep class to keep them on track. Other people do well with self study from a test-prep book. Some people like to form study groups and others like a combination of those things. The important thing to think about is, how do you learn best? That is going to be the most effective method for you. Good luck!

Doing practice problems is key! They tend to ask similar type questions on these type of tests. Rachel B.