In order to secure a good SAT score, you must perform strongly across all sections of the test. This includes the Writing & Language section, forty-four questions that run the grammatical gamut from identifying verb forms to rhetorical skills. Our students come from a swathe of educational backgrounds, and with our expert guidance and directed SAT practice they are able to improve up to 300 points on the Reading section!
How To Start
Three quarters of the Reading questions test knowledge of grammar usage, sentence structure, and punctuation.
- “Usage” includes verb forms, pronoun types, and matching the subject-verb pair when they have been split apart by a variety of prepositional phrases.
- “Sentence Structure” relates to discerning the independent and dependent clauses from modifiers and phrases to find the core sentence.
- “Punctuation” asks students to identify and replace appropriate punctuation in the sentence. This particularly relies upon detailed understanding of comma rules and the distinction between semicolons and colons.
Therefore, building up (or refreshing) knowledge of the fundamentals is the first important step. You can kickstart your preparation with A-List Education’s textbook the Book of Knowledge for a thorough overview of these rules with drills for each concept and question type.
How To Remember the Information
Once you’ve learned the rules, actively practice them in your daily reading. Find the subject-verb pair in your homework assignments and in news articles. Look for the grammar and punctuation errors on the tube adverts. For an extra challenge, copy and paste a paragraph from a newspaper, remove all the punctuation and then add it back in yourself. This forces you to grapple with sentence structure in the most active way. This consistent engagement is the best way to retain what you have learned.
Tips for the Test
On the test itself be sure to implement the following tips:
- Read the full sentence. Many students make mistakes because they rush and do not carefully read the full sentence. Read the full sentence (even and especially if it carries over the page!) and underline the subject-verb pair.
- Using the subject-verb pair, note the sentence’s structure. Where is the core sentence? Are there modifiers, relative clauses, prepositional phrases? Is there a list (if so, the list items must be in matching forms)?
- If it’s a punctuation question, circle all the punctuation in the sentence.
- For Yes/No questions, decide for yourself first what the answer is and why and then look at the answer choices. This ensures you have sound reasoning for selecting your answer.
Finally, to help you earn a good SAT score, regularly and actively reflect upon your homework assignments, drills, and SAT practice tests. This means carefully redoing questions to find the patterns of errors and studying the SAT practice test material to increase your familiarity with the test design.
If you would like support as crack the SAT Reading section, please feel free to reach out to the Academic team!