The SAT: Tips for a 1600

Testing, 1, 2, 3: From choosing which test is right for you to aiming for your perfect score, in this three-part series, Shipley students give the inside scoop on college admissions exams. In this week's post, Shipley's Natalia Joseph '17 gives her top SAT testing tips.


For the critical reading passages, know that all the answers come straight from the text. There is very little inferential thinking needed to answer the questions, so if you do not see an answer in the passage, it probably isn’t right.
To simplify the passage, make sure you understand each topic sentence and how those sentences are being supported or refuted in the questions. The grammar section mostly tests students’ knowledge of standard English convention, so know the various ways to connect independent clauses, the ways in which verbs and subjects agree, how modification works, and how to effectively use pronouns.


The math section draws its questions from algebra I and II, geometry, and basic trigonometry. On the test, these questions are ordered from easy to hard. It is important to solve the questions incrementally and to make long word problems with variables more concrete by substituting numbers and using your answers. Something most test takers do not know is that all the figures are drawn to scale unless stated otherwise, so you can use the figure to arrive at the answer. Lastly, for the non-calculator section, make sure you know your multiplication tables and exponent rules.

This post originally appeared in the October 2016  issue of the Shipley Beacon.

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About the Author

Natalia Joseph

Natalia Joseph is a Class of 2017 student at The Shipley School.