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SAT vocabulary!!

nicole21nicole21 Registered User Posts: 39 Junior Member
edited October 2010 in SAT Preparation
as of now everyone has told me that SAT vocab is soo hard. is it really true?? if so what is the best way to study for it??
Post edited by nicole21 on

Replies to: SAT vocabulary!!

  • silverturtlesilverturtle Registered User Posts: 12,496 Senior Member
    From my guide:

    For most students, the factor most limiting of their capacity to do well on the Sentence Completion questions is vocabulary. As you could probably discern from the previous questions, some of the vocabulary tested on the SAT is not commonplace among most teenagers' conversations. One way to build a robust vocabulary is to read a lot and look up any new words that you encounter. This is a great lifelong habit and will likely yield the most organic lexicon.

    However, the most effective way to build a vocabulary that will help you on the SAT is to memorize words from books made especially for the test. Because the English language comprises so many words (hundreds of thousands), there is, of course, no way to ensure that you will know every word that will appear on your administration of the SAT. Nonetheless, rest assured: words on the SAT are not randomly selected from the Oxford English Dictionary; the selections are actually somewhat predictable. Preparatory companies exploit this by compiling word lists that are actually manageable in their brevity but helpful in their coverage.

    The most efficient source is Direct Hits Volumes 1 and 2. The books do not include many words, but they are very well-chosen and accompanied by interesting blurbs to help students better remember them. Everyone who takes the SAT should know the words in these books.

    Once you have completed Direct Hits, additional vocabulary preparation may not be worth the opportunity cost. But if you are still hungry for more words, there are several extensive lists out there, including this 1,000-word list and this 5,000-word list. (Keep in mind that there will be considerable overlap among these lists.)

    One of the best ways to approach these lists is to make one run through the books while writing down all words that are foreign to you and their definitions onto flash cards. From that point, you can go through just the words that you do not know, which helps to save time.

    If you have a solid foundational vocabulary before you tackle Direct Hits, you will be well-prepared for the Sentence Completion questions after going through the books; expect to consistently get between 18 and 19 out of 19 on the section. (There are occasionally some difficult words that appear in the passages and their corresponding questions, so this vocabulary preparation will help you there too.)
  • Suleyman95Suleyman95 - Posts: 1,082 Senior Member
    Great information.
    But, one question, where to start? Start with Direct Hits? Maybe this is general advice, but every person has got his own problems and cases.For me, I'm international student, I think it's better to begin with majortests.com vocabulary, it's much more easy and TOP 100 words, to be exact, top 100 -first.So, TOP 100=>TOP 1000=>major tests vocab=>Direct(v.1 v.2)+BARROB'S 3500=>5000 list.
  • nicole21nicole21 Registered User Posts: 39 Junior Member
    Thanks!! that website was a great help
  • dark knightdark knight . Posts: 775 Member
    Silverturtle's recommendation proved to be prescient. Direct Hits (2011) emerged as the clear winner on the October SATs and PSATs.
  • Suleyman95Suleyman95 - Posts: 1,082 Senior Member
    Both volumes of Direct Hits are the best vocabulary books!
  • OhhhYouKnowOhhhYouKnow Registered User Posts: 13 New Member
    I have some advice on studying and learning the words once you've selected your list.
    Buy a blank notebook that's only for vocabulary. One each page, draw a line down the middle of the page. You're gonna need 3-5 lines for each word, so give up on the idea of trying to squeeze as many words and definitions on each page as possible. You can always buy another notebook(and another, and another) if necessary.

    Memorizing words and definitions is boring. Let's face it! This might make it a bit more interesting for you. From your word list, pick only the words you don't know. On the left side of the line write each word you don't know. For each word, on the right side of the line, DRAW SOME SORT OF PICTURE OR CARTOON to help you remember the word. The cartoon should somehow relate the "sound" of the word to its definition so that saying the word will remind you of the picture. For example, for "abridge" you might draw two bridges floating in midair compressing a book. The goofier the image, the better! There are several books on the market that have vocab cartoons, but I've found that this method of learning words works much better if the student comes up with the drawings.

    If you're having a hard time picking a list, use Silver Turtles 1000 word list, and if you master those, start picking words of the 5000 word list.
  • yeaimprettysweetyeaimprettysweet Registered User Posts: 64 Junior Member
    Maybe you should memorize something else as practice, like digits of pi. But then people might think you're nerdy and like math.
  • suncoastfansuncoastfan - Posts: 121 Junior Member
    I found Silverturtle's Guide very helpful! I would get the new Direct Hits 2011 books, since they have more words than the 2010 books.
This discussion has been closed.