SAT-isfaction Guaranteed

The new SATs are kicking off in just a few days, and there's a lot that's changed. Down from three sections to only two—math and evidence-based reading and writing—and an optional essay, this isn't the SATs we took when we were in high school. Some critics argue the new test is more difficult while others contend it's far easier, but regardless of opinions, the test boasts a redesign reflecting a more "real world" curriculum (heavily based on the common core model) than one of far-fetched, hard-to-imagine puzzles and riddles. So, what do all these changes mean for TXGU'ers? Well, for starters, expect a lot of reading and in places you might not expect. Gone are the days of cut-and-dry equations—today's SAT is filled with word-problems populating the math portion of the exam. And don't expect to see any fill-in-the-blank questions or a lot of old and archaic terms either, because the test is opting instead for more contextual questions to stump students. 

Now, what does all this mean for students starting to study for the never-before-taken test? According to some experts, lots and lots of reading (no surprise to all you educators out there). Poring over a variety of texts, especially nonfiction, has been one key strategy of note. For math, it's a bit more difficult to say. One part of the test doesn't allow the use of calculators, and with the addition of more advanced math on the new exam, there's a wider scope students will need to study—including trigonometry and statistics. As scary as all this might sound, the revamped exam shouldn't be doom and gloom for students. With some diligent studying and supportive educators, the new SAT will be a powerful stepping stone to college for many TXGU'ers. Just as long as they remember those No. 2 pencils...