Conversations about SAT and ACT scores are ubiquitous for high school students applying to college.
Still, although most student understand the high-stakes nature of the exams, many are still unsure what their study schedule should look like to ensure top results.
Anthony-James Green, a $US1,500-an-hour SAT and ACT tutor, says he knows the key to a successful standardised test schedule: beginning much earlier than most people realise.
“The trick is beginning really early, and I recommend freshman year,” Green told Business Insider. “But then keep it to 20 minutes a day — that’s really all it takes,” he said. “You can even split it up: 10 minutes in the morning, 10 minutes in the afternoon.”
The idea, he said, is to make the exam a “non-event” rather that worrying about this huge exam at the end of high school. And starting years in advance means you will see every imaginable maths, grammar, or reading problem that you’ll encounter on the real exam.
As for what concepts to focus on, Green, who says his students improve 310 to 320 points on average on the new SAT, explained that you should actually spend very little time on the concepts you already understand.
“On these tests if you’re pretty comfortable with reading and grammar and you hate maths, then you should be spending 95% of your time on maths,” he said. “Obsessing over your weakest points is way more important than looking at what you’re good at.”