How to Study for the Sat Test

The SAT can be a key factor in where a student goes to college.  While the SAT does not always measure the full potential of the student, it is the instrument that many higher education institutions use to evaluate the readiness of students.  As with many other tests, there is typically anxiety involved, particularly with those students who may have high expectations for themselves.  Therefore, some students and parents experience a level of stress as they anticipate preparations for the SAT.  With that in mind, here are a few thoughts on how to study for the SAT test. 

Know the subject matter

Obviously, it helps when students know the subject matter.  If people truly want to do well on the SAT, they will start early in life, pursue scholastic achievement, maximize the learning experiences in the classroom, and master the competencies of a variety of subject areas.  Granted, this is an overarching strategy, and most students struggle on some level with motivation througout their academic career.  The point is that the SAT does test a student on their general knowledge of curricular material.  Therefore, if a student is not a great student in general, they may have a hard time “cramming” or catching up right before taking the SAT. 


There are resources that are available for a student to use.  These include books, CD’s, and online modules.  The value of these tools is that it will give the student a general idea of what kinds of questions they will get on the test.  In addition, they will be able to practice the test experience, even if they are not able to accurately create the true testing environment.  Oftentimes, students and parents can get recommendations for SAT resources from school counselors.  Or, they can visit their local bookstore. 

Time management

If people want to do well on the SAT, they must manage their time.  Eventually people may be able to figure out the answers to questions, but the problem is that they have a limited period of time.  Sometimes the student will get into trouble on the SAT because they spend too much time on one question, rather than making their best guess and moving on.  Therefore, taking practice tests can help people to understand the limitations of their time so that they can do their best to get through the whole test.  If people do not want to practice on their own, they can also take classes from companies who specialize in test preparation.  The bottom line is that the student has to dedicate to preparation long before the test occurs.  When people start to think about the test right before they take it, they can quickly realize that it is too late.