Keep track of the time
You should bring a
non-beeping watch with you to the SAT exam. Before the beginning of each
section, write down the time the test will end. You can refer to this
note periodically during the exam to gauge your performance.
Allocate your SAT
test time wisely
Do not spend time
reading the instructions. You should do this during your preparation
and go into the exam already understanding its structure and types of questions
asked. The SAT is intentionally designed to make you feel time pressure
and the time spent reading instructions is better spent answering the questions.
You will give your best
performance if you neither rush through every question nor take an incredibly
long amount of time on a few questions and leave the rest unanswered.
There is most definitely
a proper balance between these 2 extremes.
All the questions are
worth the same number of points. As a result, it will behoove you to
NOT spend an inordinate amount of time with the more difficult questions.
when to skip a question
The most difficult
questions are at the end of the test sections. These questions are
designed to be answered correctly only 10% of the time. Go for the
"low-hanging" fruit first. If you see a question and you have NO
idea of how to eliminate even one choice, do not spend more than 20 seconds
before moving on.
(Sometimes easy problems look difficult at first glance
but the "fog" will quickly lift within a few seconds and you will be
able to answer the question very confidently.)
your omitted questions
should, however, place a question mark next to the question in the booklet so,
if you have time at the end, you will be able to easily identify the omitted
spend an equal amount of time on each question
exception of the critical reading section,
the SAT questions are arranged in
ascending order of difficulty, meaning the easiest questions are asked first and
the most difficult questions are asked at the end of the sections. Consequently,
you should not allocate an equal amount of time to each question. You will
hopefully be able to complete the first few questions in very little time and be
able to spend a little more time on the more difficult questions.
practice, you will develop a good feel for your ability level and how your time
will be best spent on each section. For example, if you practice and discover
that even spending 7 minutes each on the last fifth of the
multiple choice questions only results in a success rate that is no better than
pure guessing -- despite your best efforts -- then you will be best suited not
to attempt these problems on the exam.
you have some time left over at the end of a section...
This 3 hour
and 45 minute exam will play a large role in determining the rest of your life. Think
about it. Do you want to work for people like us or would you rather be
our boss? You're young and full of energy. Suck it up and spend the
remaining time checking your answers. Don't stop working until the proctor
If you have
time at the end of each section, feel free to go back and re-examine the most
difficult questions that you decided to omit. We also strongly encourage you to check your answers
to the first questions as these are generally very easy and you should be able
to quickly catch any dumb mistakes that would have otherwise cost you a "gimme"