SAT scores aren’t the only thing a university considers when reviewing your application, but SAT scores weigh heavily on their decision to admit you.
Preparing for the SAT
The SAT is like any other test. If you prepare for it, you’ll get a better score. To do well on the SAT you must practice for it. But don’t try to prepare for the SAT on your own. Studies show that students who enroll in SAT preparation courses or hire private SAT coaches increase their scores nearly 80 points while test takers preparing on their own increase their score only 40 points*. *Source: Journal of Educational Measurement, 1999, pp. 93-118
Well recognized SAT preparation courses, such as Kaplan and the Princeton Review, claim an average increase of 120 and 140 points. The fact is that intensive short-term coaching can substantially raise your SAT score. At selective universities a score increase of that size could easily mean the difference between rejection and an offer of admission.
Another advantage of taking an SAT preparation course is the chance to practice answering questions that appear on the actual test. Entire SAT exams are often reused in order to keep test-development costs down. The SAT preparation companies take advantage of this practice and can often decipher which tests are candidates for reuse. By enrolling in a test-prep classes you can benefit by seeing real SAT questions that may appear on your test.
The SAT Controversy
The SAT has been a controversial subject ever since it was introduced in 1926. The test has been called racist, sexist, elitist, and an inaccurate measure of a student’s academic abilities. Nevertheless, nearly every college application requires your SAT scores. Although SAT scores are not the only thing that the college admissions staff consider when reviewing your application, your SAT scores weigh heavily on their decision to admit you.
You should spend a significant amount of time preparing for the SAT. Many books and classes are available to prepare you for the SAT. Enroll in an SAT preparation course soon and complete it before the next SAT test date.