What question types appear in the Evidence-Based Reading and Writing section?
The SAT tests “high utility” words that change in definition depending on the context in which they are used. This means that students are required to have a deep understanding of more commonly used vocabulary words, and will also be required to read entire passages to discern the meanings of words.
Four types of questions are featured in the Evidence-Based Reading and Writing section: words in context, command of evidence, informational graphics, and text complexity.
Words in Context questions measure your understanding of how word choice influences meaning, shapes mood and tone, reflects point of view, or lends precision or interest. The Writing and Language portion measures students’ ability to apply knowledge of words, phrases, and language in general in the context of extended prose passages.
Command of Evidence questions test students’ ability to identify the portion of text that serves as the best evidence for the conclusions they reach. You both interpret text and support that interpretation by citing the most relevant textual support. The Writing and Language portion measures students’ capacity to revise a text to improve its development of information and ideas.
Informational Graphics questions ask students to interpret information conveyed in one or more graphics (tables, graphs, charts, etc.) and to integrate that information with information found in the text. The Reading test has two passages that include one or two graphics each. The Writing and Language portion has one or more passages that include one or more graphics, and asks students to consider information in graphics as they make decisions about how and whether to revise a passage.
Text Complexity questions include passages that span a specified range of text complexity levels from grades 9-10 to post-secondary entry. Students are asked to make and refine decisions about the placement of passages within complexity bands.
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What question types appear in the Math section?
There is a no-calculator math section, which is worth a third of your math score. The sections of the math test that do allow a calculator also feature questions that do not require a calculator to solve, where use of a calculator could serve to actually slow down the problem-solving process. These question types assess how well students make use of appropriate tools.
Four types of questions appear in the SAT math section: algebra, problem solving and data analysis, advanced math, and additional topics. Each of these broader question types may be broken down into more specific math topics.
Algebra questions require students to solve equations and systems of equations, to create expressions, equations, and inequalities to solve problems, and to rearrange and interpret formulas.
Problem Solving and Data Analysis questions require students to create and analyze relationships using ratios, proportions, percentages, and units, to describe relationships shown graphically, and to summarize qualitative and quantitative data.
Advanced Math questions require students to rewrite expressions, to create, analyze, and solve quadratic and higher-order equations, and to manipulate polynomials to solve problems.
Additional Topics questions require students to calculate area and volume, to investigate lines, angles, triangles, and circles using theorems, and to work with trigonometric functions.
More generally, the math section of the SAT thoroughly tests your foundational knowledge of math topics in the context of real world situations, involving science, social science, or career related topics, focusing specifically on the math needed to pursue careers in the STEM fields.
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When should I sign up for the SAT?
We suggest that you sign up for the SAT when you are comfortable with the test and have completed all assignments related to your course. In other words, don’t plan to take the SAT directly after the course is over, in the event that you need more time to practice. However, we do NOT suggest waiting more than 60 days after the course to take the SAT. The deadline to actually register for an SAT exam is usually four to five weeks before the test date. The SAT is offered seven times a year in the following months: January, March, May, June, October, November, and December. Students should carefully consider factors like the availability of the test date, the length of time it will take to fully prepare for the exam, and the deadlines of the colleges they will apply to when constructing their overall college admission timeline.
Schedule the exam:
- After the course has completed (but not immediately after to allow for extra study time)
- Before 60 days from the end of the course (so information is still fresh)
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