SAT Secrets: When is the best time to take the test?
The end of high school can be an exciting yet nerve-wracking time for parents and their college-bound children. Many parents are curious about if there is an optimal way to approach preparing for and taking the SAT exam. There are ideal times and preparation strategies for high school students arranging for their future college education.
The first instinct of many is to have their child take the exam senior year, as students will have their entire year of junior academics under their belt. This thinking is incorrect. Most juniors in high school are already armed with all of the appropriate math and English knowledge needed to take the SAT, although their skills may need some refreshing or fine-tuning. At this point in their academic career, the most beneficial further education is not another year in high school, but actual standardized test preparation.
The SAT exams are offered almost year round: in 2013, there are two dates in the fall, three in the winter, and two in the spring. So, when is the optimal time of year to take your first SAT? Late fall or early winter, usually December or January of a student’s junior year, is the best time to take the SAT exam. Students taking the test during these dates are way ahead of most of their peers, and they will have an advantage when it comes to applying to colleges offering early decision deadlines or those that have rolling admissions. Also, getting the first test out of the way so early gives the parents and students time to receive the scores and see where improvement is needed. If the test needs to be taken a second, or a maximum of three occasions, there is also still plenty of time to receive scores and get college applications out promptly.
As mentioned above, juniors in high school should take classes or tutoring specifically aimed at SAT prep rather than wait for another year of academics in school. Preferably, this preparation should start the end of their sophomore year. Supreme Tutoring offers packaging catering to all SAT needs, whether parents follow the optimal schedule or not. Our classes and private tutoring packages include three official SAT practice exams, so students can become familiar with the test and build confidence. We have classes for all SAT dates, and the classes run until a few days before the test so all of the strategies students learn are fresh in their minds. The SATs may be a daunting reality for high school students, but Supreme Tutoring ensures they will be armed and ready come test day.
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