Write an essay where you tell us what test preparation practices work best for you and why.

The first time I took the SAT with essay test was in the spring of my junior year of high school. I had achieved a high score on my Pre-SAT tests in the previous year, and I was able to coast through many of my classes without intensively studying due to my great ability for information retention. Thus, I assumed that I would be able to easily pass the SAT.

On the first Saturday of summer, I arrived at my high school with my admission ticket, photo-ID and pencils stowed away in my bag. The crowd of students was herded into the appropriate testing rooms, read the College Board’s Riot Act of standardized testing rules, and provide our papers to begin.

The SAT was much harder than I had anticipated. I was unable to finish either of the math sections or the essay, in the time provided. When my family received my scores a few months later, I was distraught to learn that I had scored a few points too low to apply for an important scholarship I had wanted to earn.

But, there was still hope. Other high schools in my area were offering SAT test sessions that winter. I signed up for one at the beginning of December, early enough to have my scores processed before I applied to colleges. This time, I made sure to diligently study the material beforehand. I intensively used practice tests on the Mometrix Test Preparation website, timing myself on each section. I carefully recorded the number of I missed and my average time per question and used this data to privately quantify my performance.

December came, and I set off for the new test center, this time armed not only with my admission ticket, ID, and pencils but also with my hours of study and practice. This time, I was able to complete all of the sections in the given time, and score a composite score of 1430 out of 1600, 40 points higher than my previous SAT score. Mometrix practice tests were a great boon to me, without which I would not have been able to score so highly.

Henry from Pennsylvania
High School Senior
Canon-McMillan High School