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Tips for Writing a Great SAT Essay

Jul 10

Tips for Writing a Great SAT Essay
 

Many students dread and struggle with the essay portion of the SAT, but it doesn’t have to be this way! The best way to tackle the essay portion of the test is to know what to expect, have a plan going in, and sticking to a few simple rules. Below you’ll find some tips on how you can ace this portion of the test and produce a great essay.

  • Know what to expect

Just like the rest of the test, you should practice this portion of the test as well. Writing a practice essay may seem like a lot of work – especially when you’d rather focus on the questions on the test – but a little practice will go a long way. You don’t want to be discovering your writing hangups on test day – practice writing a few essays and figure out your strong and weak points ahead of time.

  • Clean and clear

While it may seem like it would be unfair to judge someone based on their handwriting, it’s better to be safe than sorry. Taking your time to write clearly and legibly will not only allow you to turn in a much better looking essay, but by forcing yourself to slow down and process your thoughts, your essay will end up much more logical and concise. Additionally, taking extra care to format your essay properly – introduction, supporting paragraphs, conclusion, indented paragraphs, etc. – will show those grading the test that you are capable of organizing your thoughts in a logical manner.

  • Choose big words

Now, this may sound silly but we’re not saying you should fill your essay with long, impressive-sounding words just for the sake of it. However, spending a little extra time to improve your vocabulary while studying can pay off in the end. A few well-placed nice sounding words can boost your essay, show off your hard work and let your essay stand out from the rest. Just remember not to overdo it and absolutely only use a word if you are sure of its meaning.

  • Fill the allotted space

There is a certain amount of space given to you for a reason and you should take advantage of it. An essay that leaves a lot of blank space may give off the impression that you didn’t give enough time or thought to the essay and didn’t take it seriously. An essay that takes up much more space than given may give off the impression that you are incapable of expressing your thoughts and ideas in a clear and concise manner.

Test Prep Academy is the premier SAT/ACT services company for high school students. We offer instructional programs and curriculum for students preparing for the PSAT,  ACT, and SAT. Learn more about how we help prepare students for the SAT.