By Jay KC, CollegeFindMe Intern
The SAT and ACT can be stressful exams for a student can take, and combining that with school is a recipe for high-level stress. Here is some advice on how you can handle them both.
Keep a calendar
A lot of people find keeping a calendar excessive or tedious, but it can actually be a great way to manage your time. A calendar is especially useful because it helps you physically lay out your day and keeps you in check. I’m someone that is pretty forgetful, so looking at a calendar that says “Study for SAT 6:00-8:00” would help remind me to study.
Do not procrastinate
Procrastination is one of the worst things to do when you are strapped for time. You have to manage your school work and SAT efficiently, but procrastination burns it away. My procrastination is terrible until I implemented a rule; if it takes less than 10 minutes to start, then I do it. This helped me finish a lot of my homework so I could get to my SAT work.
This is one of the most important things to do when it comes to handling the SAT and ACT with school. It is likely that school and standardized testing aren’t the only two things taking up your time things such as sports, jobs, after-school clubs, or family take up a substantial amount of time. Even it means you have to drop one of these, it might be worth it. The SAT and ACT is ⅓ of your application, so the investment is worth it.
Of course, studying is one of the most important parts of this process. You have to know how to study efficiently and effectively. The SAT and ACT cover a broad range of topics spanning from 9th-12th grade, and it is difficult to go over all of that information in depth. The best way to go through this is by looking at the general topics the SAT and ACT say they test on, and marking if you know them or not. Then going over the topics you feel uncomfortable doing, and study them.
Relaxing is one of the most important parts of handling the SAT and ACT while in school. Both take up nearly all of your time, relaxing once in a while doesn’t hurt you. In fact, science says taking breaks and relaxing actually helps you in the long run. It helps your brain to loosen up and not constantly stress, which isn’t healthy at all.
Remember, SAT and ACT are important in the college application process, but they aren’t everything. Don’t overwork yourself to get the best score possible because your health and wellbeing matters. It is only one-third of your application; on top of that, some schools are test optional. So try your best, but don’t be discouraged from the outcome as long as you tried your hardest.