Guest Blog from Direct Hits: Surviving the Infamous Jr. Year

Our friends at Direct Hits recently published this advice for making the most of your Junior year and we thought we should share it with you. Also if you’re getting ready for the SAT or PSAT you should pick up their books which has a great list of words that commonly appear on the SAT.

For those of you who are juniors, the HALCYON days of summer have come to an end and the dreaded year has begun. While you may be feeling DISCOMFITED or even TIMOROUS about the upcoming year, let us DISPEL the PERVASIVE rumors that junior year is necessarily going to be the BANE of your existence, presenting only INSURMOUNTABLE challenges. Although 11th grade can be stressful, you can DEVISE and IMPLEMENT a FEASIBLE plan to THWART the customary headaches of junior year.

Ten Reasons Why the PSAT Matters


Our friends at International College Counselors recently published this advice on their blog and we thought we’d

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Many students are about to take the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT) in mid -October and many of them are probably wondering why it’s so important.Almost all high school students take the PSAT during their junior year. Some students take thePSAT as sophomores and even freshmen to get the feel for the test.Here are 10 reasons to take the PSAT and why it matters to do well:

SAT Tips: Idioms

Today’s QOTD is a great example of one of the “grammar rules” that the SAT loves that is more like stuff to memorize than it is rules to apply. Since our job is to help you out, we’re going to explain the concept behind this question so you know what to do if you see a question like this on the test. One of the things that makes this question so tough is that it’s testing idioms.

SAT QOTD: When in doubt, write it out!

College Board Question of the Day June 15On June 15th the College Board QOTD apparently killed those not yet prepared for the SAT. Well today we’re going to help the 154,000 of you that got this question wrong (and all of you who’ve yet to try this question) by showing you great strategy that would make this question a piece of cake.

Today’s strategy is: When in doubt, write it out!

SAT QOTD: Modifiers and Ray Allen

Since of course you’re doing the College Board QOTD every day, you should focus on learning as much as you can from doing those questions. Prepping for the SAT is not just about learning rules and facts, but it’s also about learning what the SAT likes and what the SAT tests. Knowing what the SAT will test most frequently will give you an edge and make you more efficient on the test.

The Question of the Day from June 14th, 2013 was a great example of a common rule the SAT loves to test: modifiers! If you understand modifier rules, you’ll easily be able to pick up 4 – 8 questions every test, and that could translate to 80 more points for your Writing score.

SAT Tips: Don’t Compare Rooms and Floors

For the SAT Writing test (and grammar in general), there are few topics that warm the heart of grammarians as much as the enforcement of rules pertaining to creating logical comparisons. On every SAT, on every grammar blog, and in every college paper, psychometricians, editors, and English professors break out the brightest red ink and go to town on the violations of “apples to apples, oranges to oranges.” In order to get ready for the SAT (and college, the GMAT, or the workplace), you have to make sure you look for any comparisons that are created and always apply the rule.

SAT Tips: The Holy Grail of SAT Math

Click here to go to College Board and submit your answer

Today’s post, inspired by the SAT Question of the Day for 3/11/12 offers us another opportunity to remind you of one of the few remaining truly magical test-taking techniques: Plugging In!

SAT Tips: Math Vocab

 

One of the first things you need to do when prepping for a test is learn the lingo. SAT Math is prone to using vocabulary that you’ve probably not seen in a while – words like integer, factor, and multiple probably haven’t come up since you were in 7th grade. And even when you saw them in 7th grade,  it probably wasn’t in the same context as how they are used on the SAT. So one of the best starting points for the SAT is to learn vocab, both the words common to Sentence Completion questions but also the words common to Math questions. The College Board QOTD on President’s day stumped 60% of the people who tried it and the only things tested are the understanding of a few math terms. Hopefully by the end of this post you’ll head over to the College Board site and be one of the 40%.

SAT Tips: Vocab Sleight of Hand

 

On February 10, the College Board posted a Sentence Completion question that bamboozled 219,021 of the 331,851 people that attempted to answer the question. This question once again got us thinking about SAT vocabulary, the way the SAT tests vocabulary, and why so many people got this question wrong. And as usual whenever SAT questions get “stuck in our craw,” we have to blog about it to help you conquer this test.

October 2012 SAT Vocabulary: Phlegmatic Vainglorious Narcissistic Polymaths

 

In the world of test preparation, December brings not only presents from Santa but it also brings many gifts from the College Board and colleges. Today’s College Board gift is a copy of the October 2012 SAT, which we get because one of our staff took the test and ordered the Question and Answer Service (for an additional $18, unless you have a fee waiver which will also waive the fee for the QAS if you choose to order it.) The QAS is available for the June, October and Jan SAT administrations each year and whenever its available we get it so we can peruse the test for trends,  patterns,  and any fun new words the College Board has decided to throw at college-bound students.

If you’re planning to take the SAT soon you should make sure you learn all the words on the list below, which were taken from the October 2012 SAT.

  • plodding
  • soothed
  • novella
  • modest
  • incredulity
  • recrimination
  • commensurate
  • indifferent
  • acclamation
  • disproportionate
  • autonomous
  • expedient
  • communal
  • munificent
  • narcissistic
  • egalitarian
  • reciprocal
  • aroused
  • perspicacious
  • phlegmatic
  • estimable
  • overbearing
  • resolute
  • philistine
  • polymath
  • charlatan
  • ideologue
  • cultivated
  • benevolent
  • pedantic
  • morose
  • gregarious
  • cosmopolitan
  • cavalier
  • urbane
  • erudite
  • mordant
  • unequivocal
  • consensus
  • pervasive
  • archetypal
  • lumbering
  • behemoths
  • Belittle
  • cynical
  • ambivalent
  • nostalgic
  • contempt
  • embroiled
  • degraded
  • underscore
  • exploit
  • unravel
  • foretell
  • scant
  • ambitious
  • timid
  • vaingloriously
  • unflagging
  • indefatigable
  • complacent
  • ineffectual
  • circumspect
  • baffle
  • enmity
  • defy
  • elucidate
  • duplicity
  • collusion
  • superfluous
  • pragmatic
  • onerous
  • subversive
  • fraudulent
  • obliged
  • supplant
  • skew
  • profound
  • mollify
  • soporific
  • insidious
  • bewildering
  • indiscernible

If you’d like a  few other lists to keep your studying going click here to see the others  we posted.

Good luck and remember if you need help preparing for the SAT or ACT visit us at sat.bellcurves.com!

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