Getting great SAT or ACT scores mean you have a wider choice of schools and courses available to you. The pressure and anxiety that most students feel at this stage of life can be overwhelming, but with a little planning and organization, you can sail right through this with flying colors.
You can't cram for this one; the volume of work is just too great to leave test preparation to the last minute. Hire a tutor, attend a study course or get a test prep guide that will help guide you in your studying. Creating a study plan over several months to prepare for the test will help spread out the learning and create far less test anxiety than trying to cram everything in the last weeks before the test. You don't need to set impossible study goals. In fact, in addition to studying, you need to take the time to rest, exercise and eat really well if you want to be operating at your prime.
Getting enough sleep and eating a healthy diet will mean that your brain has the fuel it needs to function properly so you get to work smarter, not harder. Make a realistic and achievable study schedule and stick to it.
Work on your writing skills
Some of the tests are multiple choice, but for those portions where you must write, communication is key. No matter how well you know your stuff, if you can't articulate yourself properly, you won't get the marks you deserve.
Take the time to construct your essay properly and communicate your ideas clearly so that your ideas get a chance to shine. Write practice essays to perfect your technique.
Practice makes perfect
While it's essential that you are able to communicate your ideas effectively, you also need to read the questions very carefully. SAT and ACT questions are formatted very differently from what you may be accustomed to. Use the internet to get as many test papers as you can from previous years so that you can familiarize yourself with the way questions are asked. Go through your answers to see where you made mistakes to ensure that you don't repeat those in the exam.
Get a tutor
One-on-one tutors are a great way to learn smarter and can really reduce the amount of time you spend studying. Tutors are able to identify the missing building blocks in your knowledge and fill those in. Not only are they able to help you to build a solid foundation of knowledge, they should also help with vital skills like organization and time management.
Get your in-home tutor to help you to set up a practical study schedule. They can also help you to identify your learning style. When you convert information into a medium which suits your learning style, you are able to understand it quicker, remember it longer and make deeper connections between concepts.
For example, if you have a visual learning style, you can convert important concepts into mind maps and infographics and you can watch videos rather than reading from a textbook.
Relax, you've got this
Your greatest enemy is anxiety, so take the time to sleep, exercise and relax so that you don't let your nerves get the better of you. Anxiety can actually prevent you from performing at your peak, so take a few deep breaths and try to focus on the task at hand.