Vocabulary on the ACT and the new SAT

Posted by Vicki Wood on August 26, 2016 at 9:59 AM

When the College Board redesigned the SAT this past March, the test makers made it known that it was no longer a vocabulary test; they removed the Sentence Completion questions that often featured words like chicanery, iconoclast, and obfuscate. But don't let this fool you: there are still vocabulary words on both the SAT and the ACT.

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Topics: SAT Prep, ACT prep, SAT Reading, ACT Reading

Three Freshman Tips: Planning for College

Posted by PowerScore Test Preparation on August 19, 2016 at 11:44 AM

Applying to college can be an exciting, momentous, confusing, stressful, and intimidating time. Your whole future is a question mark, and the decisions you make can affect your happiness and earning potential later on in life.

Many students assume that the college application process really starts junior year--and, in a way, they're right. That's when you really get crackin' with your college research, ACT and SAT prep, and the gathering of documents required for admission. However, that doesn't mean that freshman and sophomore years can be idled away. By taking the time to create a fantastic student profile right from the start of high school, you'll be putting yourself in a great position when you're ready hit the "Submit" button on your applications years down the road.

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Topics: College Admissions

ACT and SAT Math Tips: Reflect on Reflections

Posted by Vicki Wood on August 11, 2016 at 11:41 AM

Reflections. These Coordinate Geometry questions are a great way for the ACT and SAT to assess not just your knowledge of transformations, but your understanding of slope and the equation of a line. Let's look at what you need to know and then see how your skill set will be tested on the ACT and SAT.

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Topics: SAT Math, ACT Math

It’s Time For David Coleman To Resign

Posted by Vicki Wood on August 4, 2016 at 5:16 PM

If you’ve been reading the news recently, you may have noticed that the SAT is suffering from some serious security issues. While it’s well-known that cheating among Asian test prep companies is rampant (spurred in large part by the College Board’s persistent and absurd reuse of previously-administered US tests in its foreign testing centers), it seems now that hundreds of future official test questions have made their way into public hands.

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Topics: SAT

ACT and SAT Math Tips: Disguised Average Questions

Posted by Vicki Wood on July 28, 2016 at 11:16 AM

A popular type of ACT and SAT Math question involves averages, but does not appear to be about averages at all! Consider an example:

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Topics: SAT Math, ACT Math

How to Make the Most of the Summer Before Senior Year

Posted by PowerScore Test Preparation on July 14, 2016 at 12:49 PM

It’s easy to treat your junior year, and not your senior year, as the true culmination of your high school career. Junior year is the last full year of grades that colleges see when you apply, after all, and many high school students take on leadership positions in their extracurriculars during their junior year, and not their senior year. However, senior year is just as, if not more, important than junior year—and you need to treat it that way. Here are ten steps that you should follow during the summer before your final high school hurrah to set the stage for a productive senior year.

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Topics: College Admissions

ACT and SAT Reading: The Characteristics of Right Answers

Posted by Vicki Wood on July 7, 2016 at 3:03 PM

There is a certain comfort in multiple choice questions, knowing that the right answer is there on the page staring up at you. While we often spend more time discussing the characteristics of WRONG answers in the Reading section of the ACT and SAT, it’s important to know what the RIGHT answer looks like, too. There are several characteristics of right answers on the ACT and SAT to help you select the correct answer to Reading questions.

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Topics: SAT Prep, ACT prep, SAT Reading, ACT Reading

Too busy for ACT and SAT Prep? Think Again.

Posted by Vicki Wood on June 30, 2016 at 2:40 PM

If you are like many high school students, your hectic schedule leaves little time for ACT or SAT preparation. Between sports, extracurricular activities, and a heavy course load, you might be wondering how you’ll ever succeed on the most important test of all---the one that gets you out of high school and into college. While dedicated practice and study is recommended for the most dramatic score increases on the ACT and SAT, there are several options for even the most active students.

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Topics: SAT Prep, ACT prep

ACT English and SAT Writing: Beware of THEM (and THEY)!

Posted by Vicki Wood on June 23, 2016 at 11:02 AM

Implied pronouns--those that do not have an antecedent in the sentence nor in a preceding sentence--are difficult to spot in writing because they are so prevalent in our speech. Consider that all of the following sentences have implied pronoun errors:

    They said on the news that pilot error caused the air show collision.      [Incorrect]

    I've been to the Smiths' house, so I should probably invite them to my party.      [Incorrect]

    Even though they said my grades were too low, I applied to Harvard anyway.       [Incorrect]

    We went to the hospital, but they said to just take two aspirin and call them in the morning.      [Incorrect]

Do you see the problems in these sentences? Both the subject pronoun they and the object pronoun them are alarm bells on the ACT and SAT, so any instance in which these two words are underlined should make you pause and take a closer look.

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Topics: SAT Prep, ACT prep, SAT Writing, ACT English

ACT and SAT Math: Classic Quadratic Forms

Posted by Vicki Wood on June 16, 2016 at 1:14 PM

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: the writers of standardized tests assess the same concepts, over and over and over again.  Test experts are able to become test experts for that very reason—there is a finite amount of material one needs to learn in order to master the ACT and the SAT. If you study a few dozen tests and find these predictable patterns, you could be an expert, too.

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Topics: SAT Prep, ACT prep, SAT Math, ACT Math