ACT and SAT Reading Tips: Opposite Answer Traps

Posted by Vicki Wood on November 18, 2016 at 10:45 AM

If only one answer can be right on the ACT and SAT Reading sections, then three other answers are wrong. The test makers carefully write these wrong answer choices, intentionally using language and ideas that trick unsuspecting test takers. Learning how these incorrect answers are crafted can help you spot them, which is why eliminating wrong answers can sometimes be easier than determining the right answer.

One type of answer trap is the Opposite Answer. 

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

ACT and SAT Reading: Line References

Posted by Vicki Wood on September 30, 2016 at 2:07 PM

While a few ACT and SAT Reading questions will ask you about the passage as a whole, many of the questions will send you back to the passage with a specific line reference. Consider some examples:

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Topics: SAT Reading, ACT Reading

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

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

ACT and SAT Reading: "True to You" Answers

Posted by Vicki Wood on June 2, 2016 at 12:55 PM

There are certain facts that everyone just knows: the earth orbits the sun. Yellow and blue make green. America was founded in 1776. An adjective modifies a noun or pronoun. A group of birds is called a flock.

Unfortunately, what you know has no place on the ACT and SAT Reading sections; the questions assess how well you read a passage, not what you know about the topic in the passage.

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

SAT and ACT Reading: The Author's Attitude and Tone

Posted by Vicki Wood on April 7, 2016 at 1:59 PM

Questions about the Author’s Attitude ask you to interpret the author’s feelings toward her subject, often employing one of the following words:

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

How to improve your SAT vocabulary over Winter Break

Posted by Vicki Wood on December 21, 2015 at 10:55 AM

Happy Holidays! This will likely be my last vocabulary post, as most of the words below will no longer appear on the SAT reading section after the January test. So for those of you preparing for this last test administration, check out twenty commonly-occurring Repeat Offenders used in sentences about our favorite holiday classics.

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Topics: SAT Prep, SAT Reading

How the current SAT can help you prepare for the ACT and Redesigned SAT

Posted by Vicki Wood on December 15, 2015 at 12:41 PM

With this weekend’s penultimate administration of the current SAT (and the College Board says there is no use in learning big vocabulary words), the first administration of the redesigned (rSAT) draws nearer. Those of you who have prepared for the current SAT may be wondering how your studies can help you on the ACT or the rSAT, should you choose to take either test this spring. The good news? Almost everything you studied is tested on both the ACT and rSAT!

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Topics: SAT Math, SAT Writing, SAT, SAT Reading