The new, revised SAT exam will be rolled out in a little over a year, and one tutoring specialist has a message for all students planning to take it: You’re in for a big (and unpleasant) surprise.
“The College Board [which administers the exam] has gone out of its way to make the redesigned SAT prep-proof,” says Ray Huntington, the founder and CEO of Huntington Learning Center, a tutoring and test-prep company. “If a student depends on tricks and shortcuts, they aren’t going to do well.”
Huntington notes that while many students and parents have begun to ask him about studying for the new SAT, he expects the public at large to be caught off guard. Here’s how to get ready before the March 2016 exam:
Build a strong foundation: “In order to do well in math on the new test, you have to be a good reader,” says Huntington, who has been studying the sample questions that have been released so far. “Many of the math problems will have a backstory.”
Strengthen your writing skills: This is also true of the essay section. “The student will now have to understand the author’s argument and verbalize what that argument is,” he notes. “Many students will end up summarizing the passage instead of analyzing it.
Get comfortable with history: Huntington also warns that the passages in the verbal section will be much more complicated than what students are used to. “The redesigned SAT will require historical passages as well as passages based on the global conversation,” he explains.
Follow Lakshmi Gandhi on Twitter @LakshmiGandhi.