The SAT is taken by thousands of students each year. They study, they take the test, they get their results; but what really happens? Method Test Prep's Vice President Evan Wessler, after years of experiencing the SAT first hand, shares his reflections on his latest experience in the most recent Ebook Impressions of the June 2014 SAT.
Our latest blog series takes a behind the scenes look into this teenage rite of passage; enjoy!
If there's anything true about taking the SAT, it's that knowing what to expect is half the battle. Having some knowledge - any knowledge - of the most basic elements of the SAT, such as the section structure, length, and number of questions, confers an underappreciated advantage to students sitting for the exam. As a recreational runner, I think of it this way: it's much easier to pace myself and maintain my mental wherewithal if I know the route I'm running. When I'm aware of the next hill and how much longer I have to go, I'm far more likely to keep myself in the game until the very end. The SAT is the same deal: a near-four hour, ten section slog that tests one's ability to stay focused and levelheaded just as much as it tests academic ability.
In general, high schoolers the nation over can be short on foresight and the ability to understand the implications of a test like the SAT (or, for that matter, anything else that happens in high school). To a teenager - even a high school junior - college is in the nebulous category of life events that will happen "some time later". In reality college comes faster than anyone anticipates. As parents, educators, advisors and mentors, it's our job to give all students a dose of reality by encouraging them to put at least a little time into learning about the SAT prior to taking the exam. The positive impact on scores and the test-taking experience could be tremendous.