Almost every student, parent, and even teacher tend to have different opinions on the role of SATs in college and university applications. However, almost everyone agrees that a student must ace them to get admission to a quality college or university. We understand that preparing for an SAT can seem difficult and challenging.
That is why most students rely on several forms of resources to prepare for the tests. Some students prefer online SAT prep, whereas others take help from private SAT tutors. However, books are always required irrespective of the method students use to prepare for the SATs.
There are more than 2000 books available in the market that claim to offer the best preparation for a test. That is why it makes it challenging to choose the right books to study from for every student.
Many students often feel overwhelmed, confused, and even demotivated trying to select the right books. That is why we have written this article regarding the considerations you should make while choosing the right books to prepare for your SATs.
Do Your Research
You cannot just buy the first SAT prep book that you come across. If you choose the wrong book, you would not only waste your money but your valuable time trying to prepare using the wrong resource. Inadequate and improper preparations can affect your SAT scores negatively and force you to retake them.
SAT prep books differ in quality as well as include varied topics, strategies, and learning methods. So make sure that you read a few unbiased reviews of the top SAT books that talk about the content and uniqueness. Also, look for books with updated content regarding the latest SAT patterns.
The College Board has redesigned the SATs in the past and made some changes to the question patterns every few years as well. Therefore, look for books that pay attention to these changes and update the content accordingly. Considering these factors will allow you to narrow down your choice of SAT prep books and choose one that offers resources suited for your preparation.
Find the Types of Book You Need
There are a few types of SAT preparation books for different students. Therefore it is necessary to know what kind of book you would prefer to prepare for the best results. Choosing the wrong type of book can make studying uninteresting and demotivating.
Content heavy books focus on study materials related to SATs will give you more knowledge about the concepts and explanations. Their primary focus is to build a strong foundation for your knowledge. You will find only a few full-length practice tests included in these books.
Exam-heavy preparation books contain a lot of practice tests, quizzes, and practice essays to prepare for the SATs. They offer some focus on the knowledge and concepts, but their primary purpose is to help you practice repeatedly before you take the SATs. These books are useful once you have prepared sufficiently and need to practice taking the test. Practice tests and quizzes are also crucial to know which sections of subjects need further preparation.
Strategy-driven books focus on developing the right mindset to take the SATs. These strategies are crucial in certain scenarios while you are taking the SATs. For example, at times, you may find it difficult to arrive at the answer using your knowledge.
In such situations, you should know how to eliminate the wrong answers. Strategy-driven books provide various tips and strategies to enable you to solve the questions faster and more accurately.
Ask Recent Test-Takers
Students who have taken the SATs recently can offer the most valuable information about preparation methods, including books. It can be a family member or a friend who is in the freshman year.
Everyone you talk to will probably not refer to just one book, but at least you will be able to get a comprehensive idea of the pros and cons of the books they have used. You may not be able to finalize your decision with their recommendations, but it will help you shortlist the good ones. You can also seek advice from your teachers or tutors regarding useful resources to prepare for the SATs.
Know Your Focus Subject
Before you choose the right books, you must understand which area you need to focus on more. Some students find the mathematics section more challenging, while others find the reading or writing section is more difficult.
If you are not confident about a particular subject, you should focus more on that. However, do not make the mistake of neglecting the other one completely. Many students have suffered because they were overconfident in one of the subjects.
Choosing the right books is crucial to prepare well for the SATs, irrespective of your methods of preparation. So make sure that you reason out your considerations before you invest your time and money on an SAT prep book. You can use the strategies we have discussed in this article or formulate your own based on your knowledge and advice from others.