Archive for the ‘Strategies’ Category.

ACT Exam Secrets Guide

Did you know that there are specific tips and secrets that are part of the ACT?  If you know these secrets, you can dramatically increase your ACT Test Score.

Would you like to know the following?

  • How to avoid the time traps that the ACT test makers have built in to the ACT Test?
  • How get get through the easiest questions with super speed, saving you precious time for the harder problems?
  • How to recognize the critical words in the questions and answers that will help you immediately identify the right answer?
  • How to identify keys to questions that give away the right and wrong answers?
  • How to immediately find what you are looking for in the Reading passages, saving you precious time?

These are numerous other ACT test tips can be found in the ACT Exam Secrets Guide.  You can’t afford to not know these secrets and tips.  It can make the difference in getting the ACT test score that you want and getting a mediocre ACT test score.

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ACT Test Taking Strategies


There are a number of general ACT test taking strategies that everyone should know to do you best on the ACT.  Some of these test strategies are specific to the ACT and some are general.  For strategies that are specific to the ACT, check out ACT Exam Secrets, which is packed with tips, secrets, and strategies for taking the ACT.

Pace Yourself.  Time is your biggest enemy on the ACT.  Keep a close watch on time and make sure you are progressing.  Don’t spend too much time on any one problem or group of problems.  Easier questions may be ahead!  Don’t waste valuable time on questions that you are struggling with.

Read the Directions for Each Test Carefully.  You should do this ahead of time so that you save precious test time for answering questions.  Get the Preparing for the ACT booklet online or from your high school counselor and study the test directions thoroughly to make sure you understand each type of test.

Read each Question Carefully.  Helpful information is given in many questions that is sometimes easy to overlook.  Make sure that you pay attention to anything that might be important in answering the question.  ACT Exam Secrets will help you understand what some of those words might be.

Answer the Easy Questions First.  Since there is no penalty for guessing, make sure that you answer as many questions as possible by doing the easiest ones first.  If you aren’t sure of how to solve a problem or figure out the answer, either leave the question blank and come back to it if you have time (or guess if you run out of time), or eliminate some answers and make a guess, but mark the answer booklet so that you can come back and work on the question if you have time.

Use Logic on More Difficult Questions.  Many questions have answers that are obviously wrong.  If you can eliminate those answers, you increase your chances of guessing the right answer dramatically.  Many questions have clues as to the right answer.  Pay attention to those clues and they will help you correctly answer the question.  Looking at the different answers may also provide clues to how to answer the question.

Mark the right question.  Make sure you are answering the right number question, particularly if you skip questions.  The last thing you want to have happen is to have to erase and reanswer a bunch of questions because you got off by one.

Be careful in marking your answer sheet.  If you need to erase, do it completely.  Since this test is scored by an optical reader, you want to make sure that it doesn’t see marks that you have tried to erase.  If you need to change your answer, make sure that you completely erase your answer.  Make sure that you have a number of pencils with good erasers so that you don’t run out.

Answer every question.   This is applicable to the ACT since there is no penalty for wrong answers.  Always make sure you to leave yourself 30 seconds at the end to guess at all the unanswered questions.  If you were able to eliminate some answers along the way, that can help increase you chances of getting a right answer.

Review your answers.  Always ask yourself if the answer you are giving makes sense.   This is particularly helpful in the ACT math section.  Take just a moment to consider the answer you calculated and the question you were asked to see if there is any reason that your answer would not make sense.  For example, if you were calculating the value of an angle that was obviously greater than 90 degrees and you calculated an answer of 10 degrees, it would not make sense.  You probably made an error and a quick review would help you catch it.  There are also techniques for double checking your answer.  Use those to your advantage in reviewing your work.

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How to Prepare for the College Entrance SAT


Many people are afraid of the dreaded SAT, the longest, most comprehensive test most high school students will ever take. If they do poorly, they fear they will never be able to go to college. Although the test scores are a very bad judge of your actual intelligence or ability to succeed in life, your SAT scores unfortunately have a disproportionate impact on your college options. The good news is that it is easy for which to prepare.Most colleges take your SAT scores into consideration. Many indicate that they will not accept students who score below a certain level on the test. Colleges know that it is not a measure of your I.Q. or a real measure of how likely you are to succeed; however it is a measure of the level of one’s discipline to study and, frankly, an easy screening method for applicants.

It takes a lot of preparation time to review all the material that will be on the SAT and, most importantly, to familiarize yourself with the way the test is given. If you don’t understand the format, the test can be very confusing and intimidating. Below is a list of steps you can take to prepare for the SAT.

1. Take practice SAT’s

There is no better preparation than taking practice SAT’s and carefully reviewing your mistakes. You can find practice tests at book stores and online. For every time you take a practice test, your goal should be for your test score to improve by several points.

2. Brush up on Old Math

Much of the math on the SAT is from earlier level high school material, so even if you’re good at math, you might not remember it. You need to re-read your old geometry and algebra books to do well in this section of the test.

3. Practice Your Vocabulary

Most of the verbal section of the SAT is based on vocabulary. The SAT frequently presents unusual words that sound like simpler words but have different meanings. If you have a limited vocabulary, it is very hard to expand it in a matter of weeks, but it can be helpful to try.

4. Become a Writer

Writing is a skill that only gets better with practice. Try writing a few SAT-style essays every day and you will soon be able to do them quickly and without being nervous.

5. Be Well Rested and Fed

Make sure you get a lot of sleep the night before the test. In the morning, eat a huge breakfast of something that won’t bother your stomach. Definitely get to the test location with plenty of time to spare.

6. Don’t Guess

If you read a multiple choice question on the SAT and have no idea of the answer and are unable to eliminate any of the choices as incorrect answers, your odds of guessing and getting it right are low. You are better off skipping the question altogether. Skipping a question will negatively impact your score less than getting the answer wrong.

Having said that, if you have a multiple choice question and are able to narrow down the correct answer between one choice or another, that would be worth making an educated guess since then your odds are much better at getting it correct.

The SAT is a long, dull test, so don’t be nervous. Also, try to take the SAT early so you have time to take it again if you are not happy with your score. Regardless how many times you take the SAT, colleges accept your highest score for their consideration of admittance to their school.

About the Author
For practical college & university selection information, please visit http://www.college-selections.com, a popular site providing insights concerning issues that help you with college choices such as New York fashion colleges and many more!

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The GED Test: A Thinking Marathon

The GED test is grueling. A timed 7.5-hour test, it’s a thinking marathon, and GED students should prepare for the test just like a runner would get ready for a challenging athletic event.For people who are accustomed to working on their feet and moving around all day, just sitting in one place hour after hour is a very tough challenge. So it’s important that GED test candidates prepare their bodies and minds for sitting still and concentrating over a long period of time.

Here are some ways to prepare for the GED thinking marathon:

Train your Brain: Make sure your GED test preparation includes periodic lengthy study sessions – six, seven or even eight hours at a stretch – to give yourself experience with sitting and thinking over long time periods. Just as a marathon runner trains the body to long distances, you’ll need to practice and develop concentration techniques to maneuver successfully through the long-distance GED test.

Pace & Persevere: The competitor who starts a 26-mile race on a sprint seldom finishes the race. But smart marathoners understand pacing, energy preservation and perseverance. So smart GED test candidates need to determine how to pace themselves over the full test course – mentally, physically and energetically. Take some practice tests that approximate the test time. This will give you real-time experience with timing, pacing and alert you early to possible test obstacles, along with solutions and the perseverance techniques it takes to overcome them.

Avoid Brain Drain: It won’t be possible to stop the GED test for a 10-minute power nap. But relaxation techniques can be just as effective. Using these techniques during the test are a good way to reduce stress, relax the body, mind and re-energize both. Just consider the impact that five minutes of stretching and fresh air have on drivers who are traveling cross-country.

A variety of relaxation techniques can be used, and there are many one or two-minute methods that work well. Some people simply relax all their muscles for a few moments, close their eyes, breathe deeply and visualize a pleasant scene. Some people use meditation skills they’ve learned through fitness classes, or yoga. Or other people alternate muscular tightening with muscular relaxing, breathing deeply as they move through muscle groups from toe to head. Some people even use self-hypnosis.

Explore a variety of relaxation methods until you identify one that works for you. It’s an excellent skill that will help you avoid brain drain, persevere through the test and ‘go the distance.’

Power Up: A critical part of the athlete’s preparation is diet, nutrition and sleep. And research shows that these factors are just as important to healthy brains as they are to healthy bodies. Are you nutritionally sound? While fast food is convenient, it’s not the diet a runner chooses before a marathon. Eat healthy, especially a few days before the test. Make sure your diet includes foods designed for physical and mental stamina. Get plenty of rest, too, so you won’t be fatigued at test-time.

Ready to run? Make sure you dress for the test. Wear clothing that’s comfortable, with a healthy snack or two in your pocket or purse. When test breaks are given, take a real break. Stretch, breathe deeply; clear your mind, walk briskly. Drink water – eat a healthy snack.

And don’t forget to visualize your goal. Just like the marathoner keeps the mind’s eye and energetic focus on the finish line, GED test candidates will want to keep an eye on the credential. Visualizing success is a motivator – important during study time and at test time.

©2007 Essential Education Corporation / www.passGED.com

About the Author
Leonard Williams, an e-learning instructor with www.passGED.com, is also a curriculum specialist who focuses on research and development, implementation and assessment of best-practice learning solutions for adult learners and people with educational challenges. Leonard’s email is contactus@passged.com. He invites feedback and questio

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The New SAT Test – Important Tips Before You Jump-Start

By Sophia Gina

For many students, the SAT exam is the most important test of their high school careers. The new SAT is a three-hour test that determines you potential for future academic success. While some colleges consider high school academic performance and extracurricular activities as important as your score in standardized tests, most other colleges consider the SAT/ACT scores as one of the key factors in the admissions process. In order to apply for admission, you need to either take SAT or ACT test depending upon the college you are applying to and its geographical location. The fact that you need a good SAT or ACT score to get admission in a reputed college is irrefutably true.

Before you start with your SAT preparation, there are a few important things you must know. You should also understand and avoid the most common mistakes with respect to SAT test which are frequently made by uninformed students/parents. In the following paragraphs we outline important strategies needed for effective SAT preparation. Without a clear direction, the SAT preparation may turn out to be sloppy and haphazard resulting in disappointing results. Therefore the more careful you are in the early stages of your preparation; the better you would be with the end results.

GETTING STARTED WITH SAT: THE OFFICIAL STORY

An informed approach to SAT preparation begins with checking the College Board’s website (http://www.collegeboard.com) for testing dates, locations and registration procedures. Spend a good amount of time checking the format and content of the test. Read the tips and strategies recommended by the people who design and administer the test

CHOOSING THE RIGHT PREPARATION MATERIAL & SUPPORT

After acquiring preliminary information about SAT, you should proceed to assemble the right quality of study material for the SAT exam. While there is a lot of support available to prepare for the SAT test, your selection will largely depend on access to those resources and your comfort level with different modes of preparation.

You should select textbooks after consulting individuals who have already taken the SAT test in recent past. Those familiar with new trends can guide you through and help make a good choice of study materials among those available for SAT preparation.

You may also opt for support in the form of SAT classroom review courses or contact a private tutor. However, classroom courses and professional help from tutors may prove to be very costly.

The good news is that you can now think of enrolling in new online audio-visual courses for test preparation. New online courses have produced encouraging results. These methods of online preparation are not only equivalent to classroom courses and private tutors, but also come at a fraction of their costs. Online SAT preparation courses are rapidly gaining popularity among students across the globe because of their versatility and effectiveness.

DIAGNOSTIC TESTS: THE STARTING POINT

A diagnostic test should be the starting point of your preparation, as it will give you a better idea of your strengths and weaknesses. After gaining a good familiarity with the SAT structure, and identification of strengths/weaknesses, set your goals and design a study plan that best fits your situation. Please note that these first two steps should be completed as quickly as possible in order to allow the maximum time for the actual SAT preparation.

FORMING YOUR OWN ‘GANG’

Competitive environments nurture talents. Many students make the mistake of not teaming up with colleagues. These students may start up very enthusiastically only to loose their momentum after a few weeks into preparation. Having a good study group provides the much needed instrumental and moral support. A healthy and supportive competitive environment aids good preparation by helping you decide what resources to use and learn from others accomplishments and mistakes. However, one must realise that a good ‘gang’ may only help one so far, the actual work has to be done by the student himself.

PRACTISE THE WAY YOU WANT TO PERFORM

Your study should replicate as much as possible the conditions of the actual SAT test. Take numerous practice tests, and try doing as many sections at once as you would on the day of actual test. The more your SAT preparation resembles the actual test, the more comfortable you will be when you take the real test. The cliché in sports/arts that “the way you practice is the way you perform” is more than true for SAT preparation.

Set demanding but reasonable goals for yourself and give yourself that extra push which makes the distinction between a good SAT score and a great SAT score. Jumps start your academic career with a bang!

Best of luck !

Sophia started her career in a publishing company. Subsequently she started a home-based business. During those years, she developed interests in standardized test preparation and worked for leading test review companies for 5 years before joining TargetSAT.com as the Program director. TargetSAT.com provides a unique interactive href=”http://www.targetsat.com” mce_href=”http://www.targetsat.com”>SAT preparation course on math which is one of the best on the net.

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What You Need To Know About The ACT Test Registration Process

By Linda Hinkle

Getting through the ACT test registration process the first time can be a bit intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be. If you familiarize yourself with the details well in advance, you can avoid that overwhelmed feeling of drowning in paperwork.

As a high school mathematics teacher for many years, I would watch as students got caught up in frenzy every time the deadline for ACT test registration rolled around. They would rush to the counselor’s office, grab the packet, and hurriedly fill out the forms so that they could get it to the post office to be postmarked just in time to meet the deadline!

Plan now to not wait until the last minute to register. Some basic information you need to know about the registration process follows.

Options for registering:

You may register online or by using a registration packet. The cost is the same for each option, and online registration is quicker and easier. However, there are some circumstances under which you must use the registration packet. You must use the packet if you:

need disability accommodations
need to change your test center or test date
are testing outside the United States
are using a state-funded voucher or fee-waiver
are enrolled in grade 6, 7, 8, or 9
do not have a Visa or Mastercard
A third option for registration is by telephone, but only if you have registered for a national test date within the last two years. There is an additional $10 charge added to the basic fee for this option.

Registration Fees:

The basic fee for the ACT (No Writing) is $29. The fee for the ACT Plus Writing is $43. The basic fee includes reports for you, your high school, and up to four colleges.

Requesting Arranged Testing:

You must request arranged testing if:

you are a homebound or confined student
there is no testing center within 50 miles
your religious beliefs prohibit Saturday testing
Additional Fees That May Apply:

There are various additional fees that can apply which include late registration, changing your testing date or testing center, requesting reports be sent to more that four colleges, as well as some other circumstances.

This is a brief overview of the ACT test registration process for those who have no extenuating circumstances. If you need more complete information, you can find it at the ACT website, www.ACT.org

Linda Hinkle is an educator and advocate for parents of high school students. For more information and articles about high school and getting ready for college, visit her website http://www.highschoolstuff.com

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