Applying to independent school can be a stressful and overwhelming process for students of any age. Looking for some helpful SSAT tips and strategies to rid you of some stress and to help you ace the SSAT? Look no more, you’re in the right place! Keep reading below to discover expert SSAT tips for both studying and test taking so you know what to do before and during your exam.
Before Your Exam: SSAT Tips for Studying
1. Study Word Roots
During the vocabulary questions, it is inevitable that you will come across a word or two that you don’t know. One very useful trick is to study word roots in addition to vocabulary words, so you can do your best “smart guessing” during the test. One fun word roots study method is trying to guess the meanings of Harry Potter spells! Check out some of our SSAT Word Roots Flashcards to get started.
2. Practice, Practice, Practice!
The best way to study for the test is to actually take the test. Make sure to get your hands on some practice tests, sample questions, and quizzes. Testing yourself is the best way to find out your strengths and weaknesses, and that way you will know what you need to study more. Try these SSAT Sample Questions on ExamTime.
3. Don’t Forget about the Basics
Particularly in the Quantitative sections, knowing the basics of the SSAT topics will go a long way with your score. Having a solid foundation of knowledge will keep you from getting completely stumped and will help your ability to make educated guesses. So, don’t forget to study things like basic algebra, the difference between adverbs and adjectives, and how to identify an author’s tone. As easy as these topics may seem, you won’t regret reviewing them!
4. Talk to Your Teachers & Tutors
The best people to go to for SSAT tips and advice are the people who know you as a person and as a student. If you are struggling with a certain topic or with staying focused, don’t be afraid to ask for help! Your friends are great too, but you never know when their advice will be rooted in competitiveness or negativity. Your teachers and tutors always have your best interest at heart, and they want you to succeed as much as you do!
5. Make a Plan and Follow It
The best way to relieve yourself of stress and to stay motivated is to keep organized, focused, and engaging yourself in your material. ExamTime offers many great tools to do so. First off, take a look at our Study Planner and see how easy it is to create your own study schedule online on ExamTime. Organizing a bit of studying each day will go a long way and is much more effective than cramming the week before the test. We also offer plenty SSAT Flashcards, Mind Maps, Quizzes, and Notes so you can get going on improving your SSAT score now.
SSAT Tips for Test Taking
1. A Healthy Mind Produces a Healthy Score
First and foremost, get a good night sleep the night (or nights!) before the test and eat a healthy, hearty breakfast. Coming in to the test tired and unfocused puts you at an immediate disadvantage. It’s also a great idea to bring a snack and plenty of water so you can stay energized throughout the exam. Also, don’t psych yourself out! Pre-test nerves are inevitable but make sure you don’t let them get to you. Take plenty of deep breaths and be confident in yourself, you can get the score you deserve!
2. Watch Out for Indicator Words
In the Reading Comprehension section especially, you will see lots of words like “because,” “sometimes,” “such as,” etc. that are great indicators of an author’s argument. When you see these words, alarms should go off in your head to take a note.
3. Be Mindful of the Time
Throughout the test, make sure you take note of how much time you have left. One of the most popular SSAT Tips is to bring a wrist watch or small alarm clock to place on the table in case you can’t see the clock in your test taking room. Also, don’t spend too much time on one question! If you get stumped and can’t make an educated guess, you’re better off skipping the question and coming back to it.
4. Don’t Be Afraid to Guess
If you can eliminate one or more of the multiple choice answers on a question, use your gut feelings and make an educated guess! Plus, if you’ve been good about studying your SSAT Flashcards and Mind Maps, odds are that your guess will be right.
5. Plan Ahead
We have found that one of the most effective SSAT tips is planning ahead during the test. If you stay on your toes and know ahead of time what you need to do, you are much more likely to stay focused and produce the results you want. For example, jotting down a quick outline before you begin the writing sample will ensure a clear, concise argument. It’s also a great idea to skim over the questions for each passage in the Reading Comprehension section, that way you know what to look for!
We hope these SSAT tips were helpful for you, and if they were, don’t forget to refer back to them throughout your study process. If you want more SSAT tools, tips, and resources, check out our SSAT Index Page with all of our great ExamTime study features. Or, ready to start creating your own SSAT study materials? Sign up now for everything from Quizzes to Mind Maps and Flashcards to Notes!