Taking the SATs is a big step for every student as it is a crucial examination that can make or break their career. Students have access to a lot of resources to prepare for the SATs. Every student has a preferred method of preparation. Some prefer to study from books, while others opt for private or online SAT tutoring.
The reading section of SAT consists of 52 multiple-choice questions that you have to answer in 65 minutes. You will have to read five passages that contain the information related to the questions.
You need to understand these passages and deduce the answers to these questions. Apart from knowledge and practice, students also need some tips and strategies to improve their SAT scores. We are here to discuss some crucial tips to boost the reading SAT scores.
Take Practice Tests
Since you would not have any pre-existing knowledge regarding the passages, the only way you can prepare yourself is to take practice tests. Practice tests will enable you to understand how well you can understand the reading sections and deduce what the author is trying to say.
You should understand your strengths of passage reading and improve any weaknesses before you take the test. Practice tests are also beneficial to time yourself and check whether you can complete the test on time and not.
Also, keep in mind that you will have to take some time to review your answers, so make sure that you follow this system during your practice tests. There are a few ways to make your answering process faster, which we will discuss in the subsequent sections.
Learn to Skim the Passages
The trick to ace the reading section of SAT is to learn how to read a passage as quickly as possible. Most students make the mistake of spending too much time reading and comprehending the paragraphs, which leaves them with inadequate time to answer all the questions.
Therefore, you need to learn how to skim through the passages before you start answering the questions. Most resources will advise against reading the questions first before you start reading the passages. But in our opinion, reading the questions first helps the students identify the sections which contain the answers faster.
That way, they will know the paragraphs that they need to read more carefully. When a student skims through the passage, they should identify the topics covered in each paragraph. It allows them to identify the relevant section for each question to find the answer there.
So instead of trying to read the passages word by word entirely, skim through them before you start answering the questions. Alternatively, you can read the questions first and then find the answers in the passages.
Eliminate the Wrong Answers
Every question in the SATs presents four choices for answers, but only one is the right one. Sometimes you may find it difficult to find the correct answer to a particular question. Many students make the mistake of spending too much time trying to focus on finding the accurate answer.
Instead, the wise thing to do is to eliminate the wrong ones using methods of deduction. Since the SATs do not penalize wrong answers anymore, you should try answering every question.
The SATs follow certain patterns for the answers, and learning those patterns can be the key to eliminate the wrong answers. So make sure you learn the tips and tricks of identifying those patterns to help you complete the exam faster and more accurately.
Answer the Easier Questions First
This is another reason why we recommend you read the questions first. It will allow you to identify the questions that are easier to answer. Answering the easier questions first not only saves you a lot of time but also guarantees that you do not miss out on them due to a shortage of time in the end.
It also has the psychological benefit of boosting your confidence and motivating you to attend to the rest of the questions. Remember that you will be spending most of the time reading the passages, which means you will have less than half a minute for each question.
So if you do not know the answer to your question right away, skip that and move onto the next one. Once you have answered all the easy questions, you can come back to the ones you have skipped and ponder on their answers. Try to answer every question as there is no penalty for wrong answers in the SATs.
Practicing and learning the tricks are the only ways to prepare for the reading section of the SAT. So make sure that you take as many practice tests as you can. Also, try to learn useful tricks on how to skim the passages and eliminate wrong answers. These are some of the definite ways to achieve good scores in the reading section of SATs.