How to kick-start test prep with the Testive SAT/ACT Selector

Momentum.

It’s the key ingredient for a successful test prep journey. How do you generate it, and how do you keep it up?

Developing and maintaining momentum when prepping for the SAT/ACT starts with picking the right test, which is why I asked our engineering team to help me build the Testive SAT/ACT Selector tool. I’ll tell you about it in a moment, but, um (see what I did there? “Moment…um” Okay, it’s corny), first I want to make sure you understand why picking one test to focus on should be the first thing on your list.

The two common pitfalls students encounter with test prep

Here are two common pitfalls students encounter when preparing for the SAT and the ACT:

First, students don’t commit to either test and they get started too late. That is, they don’t begin their prep early enough to ever build significant momentum. They have to get to the finish line when they’re only halfway through the race. If they then decide to switch tests, they’re starting all over and already playing catch-up.

Second, students attempt to prep for both tests at once and they burn out early. Even worse than switching tests after an official attempt is trying to get ready to take both at once…you’re not just starting all over after one “sitting.” You’re starting all over every day or every week. Talk about a momentum-killer.

A student’s first experience with testing needs to be informative, motivating, and provide clear next steps. This is why we built the SAT/ACT Selector: to tell students which test to prep for so they can simply get on with getting started, confident that they’re focused on the right test, without having to dread taking a practice test for several hours.

What is the SAT/ACT Selector?

The SAT/ACT Selector as a 30-minute assessment that tells students which test best suits their skillset- both in terms of content and pacing.

Under the hood, we have put our years of expert knowledge (gleaned through running thousands of students through tens of thousands of SAT/ACT questions in our adaptive practice app) to use by carefully selecting questions designed to reveal each student’s strengths and weaknesses. What the student gets is a crafted personal analysis along with a test recommendation, and a follow-up guided review of the assessment. 

  • SAT/ACT Selector Introduction
  • SAT/ACT Selector Reading Section
  • SAT/ACT Selector Math Section
  • SAT/ACT Selector Results Section

How the SAT/ACT Selector works

Students take 30 minutes to answer 24 questions across four content areas.

Questions are carefully selected to reveal strengths specific to SAT or ACT content...

...and to reveal the student's ability to answer questions in a timed environment.

Based on all of this information, we can determine which test they're likely to score higher on, and why. Let's get started!

Remember taking a quiz or doing homework and then never seeing it again? Just because the SAT/ACT are something you “have to do” doesn’t mean they can’t provide impactful learning experiences. And the better those experiences are each time, the more likely it is that your student will keep up with their prep. That’s just another way of describing momentum!

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By |2019-07-02T16:12:18+00:00July 2nd, 2019|Testive|

About the Author:

Tom Rose is a career educator and technologist. He has been a professional test preparation tutor for over a decade and is the co-founder of Testive, an online SAT and ACT prep company. Tom started Testive at MIT, after spending years as a highly paid private SAT and ACT tutor, to provide students with personalized, efficient, and affordable test prep.