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Low psat and sat practice. Help!

smithvesmithve Registered User Posts: 2 New Member
My daughter is not a good tester. She does struggle in math testing as well. Which is confusing because she has a 4.46 gpa in all honors and AP classes. Her 10th grade psat was 940 11th grade 970 win no prep. We were very disappointed and took action we signed her up for Princeton review sat test prep class and hired a math tutor. She took a practice test her first class and it was a 1000. She said she struggles with timing and math. She is not looking Ivy level schools Most are in the 1200 range for 50% acceptance. She is a procrastinator and not very self motivated I encourage her to do self practice. She uses apps and Khan. Any suggestions? Is it possible to bring her score up 200 points with the March and May or June test? She is going to try to ACT in Feb for comparison. Calm
My nerves folks.

Replies to: Low psat and sat practice. Help!

  • peach0v0peach0v0 Registered User Posts: 9 New Member

    I didn't start out as a good test taker either. Going to math tutoring a few times every week definitely helped me. I think an important mindset to have when prepping is to treat the experience as something fun. It sounds weird, but once you start enjoying reading the passages and solving the math problems you will likely improve faster than if you treated it like a chore.

    I went from not being able to finish half of the SAT math problems in time to getting a perfect math score in 2 years. From personal experience I believe it's possible to improve drastically as long as you keep on practicing all the time. The more math problems your daughter does the more familiar she will be with all the types of questions the SAT likes to ask.

    I suggest her come up with a weekly schedule to do challenging problems and stick with it till she takes the test. If she is not very motivated then maybe you want to get involved too and encourage her to really want a higher score. Honestly, if she doesn't have the desire and willingness to improve nothing will help her.

    Khan Academy is a great resource since it is official. I took a couple practice tests on there, and they accurately predicted my actual SAT score. A lot of my friends use Princeton Review, but I personally like Barron's.

    For ACT prep I would recommend ACT Academy. Their tests are pretty accurate as well.

    Improving 200 points on the SAT in a few months is not easy, but it is possible if she works hard for it starting now. For me ACT Math was harder than SAT Math. If your daughter is already feeling a time pressure on the SAT I would say she would definitely run out of time on the ACT since it even more time-limited than the SAT.

    But still have hope. I have seen other students in your daughter's situation who were able to get into their dream schools. Good Luck!
  • curiousambercuriousamber Registered User Posts: 15 Junior Member
    There's an online program that says if you don't get 1200+ you get your money back, (forgot which website), there's also prep scholar which is 160+ points or money back. They would probably be the quickest but would take lots of dedication and independence.
  • QBeeMomQBeeMom Registered User Posts: 6 New Member
    Try the ACT. My D has a 4.5 GPA and is testing shy of 1200 on the SAT. She wants to have a score that better reflects her abilities as a student and asked for test prep. We are using individual tutoring at a local company. They will hold her accountable if she is not prepared and there is nowhere to hide in a one on one session (but she works hard for everything, and is a planner). Early comparative samples and practice have CLEARLY indicated that the ACT is a much better test for her and she can feel it as well. Despite the time limit, I think the ACT is a little more straightforward and builds in difficulty, so it just makes more sense to her. She will do the March SAT since we are already registered but is focusing on the April ACT for her best score. Don’t forget test optional schools as a backup plan. Good luck!
  • umiami22umiami22 Registered User Posts: 15 Junior Member
    I am also a very bad test taker. I took two separate SAT prep classes because I was that bad. the SAT takes constant practice. If the SAT isn't working out for her, try the ACT. I found that the ACT was much easier time management wise. I took the SAT 4 times before I could get a score I was pleased with. Keep in mind that the SAT or ACT isn't the only thing colleges look at. I've had friends who got into great schools with a 1000-1100 SAT score. Best of luck!
  • smithvesmithve Registered User Posts: 2 New Member
    Thank you all so much for your advice. She is taking the ACT tomorrow morning. She hasn’t prepared for it as it’s on a whim since we received advice that she should try it so she is going to see what it’s like and if she finds it easier she can switch her focus to preparing for the next one and take it again.
    I am finding her prep and practice time to be limited due to her already over scheduled homework and extra curricular activities.
    Most of the schools on her list are within. 1200-1300 range. One is test optional but that school is about 5th it 5th on her list, a safety school.
    I got her a private tutor as well and she works on SAT math and her current Pre Calc. She studied for a weekend working with the tutor via email then again in person for an hour. The report back was she knew the material and was confident she took the test 2 days later after more studying and failed the test!!!! This is what we are struggling with. I don’t understand
  • eb23282eb23282 Registered User Posts: 336 Member
    DD took PSAT with no prep in 10th grade - 1130
    Took again in 11th grade still with no prep - 1130 again
    Took a two-day crash course the weekend before SAT - 1350

    Yes, it's possible to jump 200 points.
  • lostaccountlostaccount Registered User Posts: 5,112 Senior Member
    "Good students" meaning those who are invested in learning material and do so for the utility of what they learn often do better on the ACT. Those who get good grades primarily because they are driven to compete or are motivated by grades tend to do better on the SATs.
  • ItsComingHomeItsComingHome Registered User Posts: 30 Junior Member
    If you still have time, I'd say you should advise her to grind UWorld Math. It guides you step by step; its questions are very similar to those you'll see on the test; you'll be able to improve tremendously.
    I have heard great stories of people's scores going up easily just by really sticking to UWorld. The explanations are superb too. It's the best resource for Writing and Math.
  • anthonydavis23anthonydavis23 Registered User Posts: 16 Junior Member
    I recommend doing problems consistently everyday... if a tutor helps keep her on schedule, that'll be a plus too. Consistency and practice is key!
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