Are You a Great Student Struggling With the SAT? We Can Help!
This article was originally published on Socratic Summer Academy’s blog.
- Countless parents have asked us why their student gets good grades but has low SAT scores — not realizing that this is super common!
- Prepping on her own in high school, Alyssa could never get above a 650 on the math section of the SAT exam. So how did she get to a perfect 800?
- The concepts that are tested on the SAT exam are finite, which makes it able to be broken down.
- With our call and response strategy, once students have identified the problem type they know exactly how to begin solving a problem.
- Get more SAT prep tips on our blog!
Why Does My Child Have Good Grades but a Low SAT Score?
Because I do test prep, many people assume I got a perfect SAT score when I was in high school. That’s true for many tutors, but for me, it couldn’t be further from the truth. Like many students we work with, I had perfect grades and did everything I needed to do to prepare for college. I took the hardest classes and was valedictorian, but no matter what I did, I couldn’t get my math score above a 650. No matter how much I prepared, I couldn’t increase that score.
Breaking down everything that can be tested
Now, after teaching the test for years, I have a perfect score on the math. So what did I do to get to this point?
What finally worked for me was breaking down every concept that appears on the test. The SAT is standardized, and each test needs to be comparable to the one before it — which means there are only a set number of concepts they can test you on!
That means that, at SSA, we have been able to predict not only exactly what is going to be tested, but how it is going to be tested.
Call and response strategy
Our strategy is centered around a call and response. When students see a certain type of question, they know exactly what they should do first to tackle the problem.
When students have learned their concepts and their calls and responses, they whiz through the test! It becomes like a game — students may recognize the tricky way the College Board is testing a concept they know, or instantly realize that they’ve seen an identical question many times before.
You can learn more about how we break down the SAT here.
You can — and will! — increase your score.
You don’t have to be “naturally” good at testing to increase your score. Take advantage of the fact that this is a standardized test, and the content is limited. All that you need to do is work hard and learn your patterns.