Thursday, October 15, 2015

Tips for Standardized Tests

For all my seniors/juniors out there...this post is for you. I've taken the ACT twice, but recently decided that I wanted to take it again. I did fine on both of my tests, but if I could up my score by just 1 or 2 points it would seriously make all the difference. Truthfully, I do pretty well on standardized tests. I never get test anxiety, I can easily stay focused and tend to understand the material fairly easily. I'm here to share some of my top tips to doing well on standardized testing if you're planning on taking the ACT (I've never taken the SAT) that will make the test just a little less stressful.

+Actually eat a good breakfast
Whenever advice is offered about testing well one of the top things mentioned is to eat a healthy breakfast. I totally disregarded this because I'm typically the person to not eat before school, but bring a snack before lunch. This was a big mistake. My stomach was seriously so loud during the test and I had a bit of trouble focusing because I didn't want everyone to hear my stomach growling. Lesson learned. Be sure to eat something that will keep you full, but not something too good that will put you in a food coma!

+Come prepared
This means have your calculator charged, a bunch of #2 pencils, your ID and water with you. These are the essentials and you don't want to sacrifice your scores because you didn't have all of your necessities.

+Go with your gut & don't change your answers
It is actually proven that your first answer to the question is more often the right answer, than when you change your answer two to three times. Obviously if your answer is wrong and you realized that, go ahead and change it, but don't spend too much time lingering on if a question is right or not. Stick with your gut!

+Prepared adequately 
Although a tutor is helpful, it is not always available to everyone. Yet, this shouldn't stop you from preparing for the test. There is plenty of online prep (from the ACT) that gives you sample questions along with the answers and the reasoning. Do at least that. Taking the test is only half the battle, be sure to prepare so you decrease the amount of times you'll have to take it.

+Don't stress
The ACT is timed strangely so you have just under the amount of time than you'd like to to finish so understand that to get everything completely finished you'll have to work diligently. Stressing out about the test will only make the entire experience worse. Remember that doing well is important, but it's not the end of the world if you receive a score lower than expected. There is so much more to a college application than just your test score.

What are your best tips for standardized tests?


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