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    #216637 - 05/21/15 05:42 AM Preparing for the new math SAT
    Bostonian Offline
    Member

    Registered: 02/14/10
    Posts: 2612
    Loc: MA
    Quote:
    BTW, I never took the SAT - what level of Maths do the questions go up to? Wondering when my DD10 will be ready to try it...

    Short answer -- I'd say Algebra II. The SAT is changing, starting spring 2016. You can read about the new math SAT at

    The Redesigned SAT (section IV) and
    Evaluating the New PSAT: Math

    Khan Academy https://www.khanacademy.org/sat says it will have study material for the new math SAT in June of this year.

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    #216641 - 05/21/15 08:21 AM Re: Preparing for the new math SAT [Re: Bostonian]
    blackcat Offline
    Member

    Registered: 05/23/13
    Posts: 2154
    I'm just curious about the "writing" on the SAT. Do students actually need to write an essay, or is it just a multiple choice tests ABOUT essays? I looked at the link but figured it would be easier to ask if someone can answer quickly. DD is only in fourth grade but would freak out if she needed to plan and write something, esp. in a time limit.

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    #216643 - 05/21/15 08:37 AM Re: Preparing for the new math SAT [Re: blackcat]
    Bostonian Offline
    Member

    Registered: 02/14/10
    Posts: 2612
    Loc: MA
    Originally Posted By: blackcat
    I'm just curious about the "writing" on the SAT. Do students actually need to write an essay, or is it just a multiple choice tests ABOUT essays? I looked at the link but figured it would be easier to ask if someone can answer quickly. DD is only in fourth grade but would freak out if she needed to plan and write something, esp. in a time limit.

    After reading https://www.collegeboard.org/delivering-opportunity/sat/faqs , I think you do not need to write an essay if you just want math and verbal scores . The SAT is going back to two scores, each in the 200-800 range.

    Quote:
    Will the SAT still have an essay section?

    Yes. Students will be asked to write an essay analyzing a source document. The essay prompt will be shared in advance and will remain consistent; only the passage will change. The Essay section will no longer be required by the College Board. However, many school districts and colleges will require students to complete the Essay. Learn more about the Essay.

    Why is the essay optional?

    There are two main reasons behind the decision to make the essay optional on the redesigned SAT. The editing work students do in the multiple-choice Evidence-Based Reading and Writing section is deeply predictive of college success. However, one essay alone has not in the past contributed significantly to the overall predictive power of the exam. Furthermore, feedback from college admission officers was split; some of them found the essay useful while many did not.

    ...

    How will SAT scores change?

    The redesigned SAT will be scored on a 400- to 1600-point scale. The Evidence-Based Reading and Writing section and the Math section will each be scored on a 200- to 800-point scale. Scores for the Essay section will be reported separately.

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    #216645 - 05/21/15 08:47 AM Re: Preparing for the new math SAT [Re: Bostonian]
    bluemagic Offline
    Member

    Registered: 03/29/13
    Posts: 1489
    My son took a sample new SAT a few months ago. One of the differences from the old SAT & new is the level of math. SAT used to go through Geometry, while ACT you needed at least 1/2 year of Algebra II. The new SAT is trying to match the level of the ACT. But I would check what topics are covered in one of the above resources. Not all Algebra classes cover the same topics particularly with the changes in Common Core.

    Keep in mind that the SAT/ACT test the problems do go from easiest to hardest. So your daughter can probably get a 'good' score for her age without having mastered all of the material. It is more important that basic Algebra & Geometry are solid.

    As to the essay. It's the same as the old SAT just the essay is optional and not included in the total score. This is also in line with what the ACT does.

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    #216646 - 05/21/15 08:51 AM Re: Preparing for the new math SAT [Re: Bostonian]
    blackcat Offline
    Member

    Registered: 05/23/13
    Posts: 2154
    Ok, thanks. I guess that's both good and bad news. I was hoping that there would be no essay writing at all, but at least it's optional and there is a way out if DD does not get past this angst by the time she has to take the test. It seems like the scoring of an essay would be so subjective.


    Originally Posted By: Bostonian
    Originally Posted By: blackcat
    I'm just curious about the "writing" on the SAT. Do students actually need to write an essay, or is it just a multiple choice tests ABOUT essays? I looked at the link but figured it would be easier to ask if someone can answer quickly. DD is only in fourth grade but would freak out if she needed to plan and write something, esp. in a time limit.

    After reading https://www.collegeboard.org/delivering-opportunity/sat/faqs , I think you do not need to write an essay if you just want math and verbal scores . The SAT is going back to two scores, each in the 200-800 range.

    Quote:
    Will the SAT still have an essay section?

    Yes. Students will be asked to write an essay analyzing a source document. The essay prompt will be shared in advance and will remain consistent; only the passage will change. The Essay section will no longer be required by the College Board. However, many school districts and colleges will require students to complete the Essay. Learn more about the Essay.

    Why is the essay optional?

    There are two main reasons behind the decision to make the essay optional on the redesigned SAT. The editing work students do in the multiple-choice Evidence-Based Reading and Writing section is deeply predictive of college success. However, one essay alone has not in the past contributed significantly to the overall predictive power of the exam. Furthermore, feedback from college admission officers was split; some of them found the essay useful while many did not.

    ...

    How will SAT scores change?

    The redesigned SAT will be scored on a 400- to 1600-point scale. The Evidence-Based Reading and Writing section and the Math section will each be scored on a 200- to 800-point scale. Scores for the Essay section will be reported separately.

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    #216647 - 05/21/15 09:06 AM Re: Preparing for the new math SAT [Re: blackcat]
    bluemagic Offline
    Member

    Registered: 03/29/13
    Posts: 1489
    Originally Posted By: blackcat
    Ok, thanks. I guess that's both good and bad news. I was hoping that there would be no essay writing at all, but at least it's optional and there is a way out if DD does not get past this angst by the time she has to take the test. It seems like the scoring of an essay would be so subjective.
    MY DS16 has the same problem with writing and needs to take the SAT next year. My son will get freeze with the essay writing and put down nothing. I figure he may have to take the SAT a few times because it might just mean hitting the right prompt. It's a very frustrating problem in H.S. At least he takes the PSAT first and that doesn't have an essay.

    At least with the new test his writing score won't have to include the essay score. Even in the 'old' test many schools let you superscore. Take the best score from each section to make your total.

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    #216650 - 05/21/15 09:29 AM Re: Preparing for the new math SAT [Re: Bostonian]
    NotSoGifted Offline
    Member

    Registered: 04/14/12
    Posts: 448
    Can try the ACT too. However, for kids applying to college, best to take the ACT with writing. The essay score does not figure into the composite score, but many colleges require the ACT with writing (even though they don't give much weight to the essay score). For a middle school kid, I would do the ACT w/o writing or the new SAT (starts March 2016) without the essay.

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    #216657 - 05/21/15 10:43 AM Re: Preparing for the new math SAT [Re: Bostonian]
    aeh Offline
    Member

    Registered: 04/26/14
    Posts: 3795
    Our #1 just took the SAT. The essay is the first section presented, so that might be something those with writing anxiety will have to work on--don't let the essay throw you off for the rest of the test.
    _________________________
    ...pronounced like the long vowel and first letter of the alphabet...

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    #216659 - 05/21/15 10:50 AM Re: Preparing for the new math SAT [Re: aeh]
    Bostonian Offline
    Member

    Registered: 02/14/10
    Posts: 2612
    Loc: MA
    Originally Posted By: aeh
    Our #1 just took the SAT. The essay is the first section presented, so that might be something those with writing anxiety will have to work on--don't let the essay throw you off for the rest of the test.

    I assume that once the essay becomes optional in Spring 2016, it will be given last, so that some test takers can leave.

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    #216662 - 05/21/15 11:01 AM Re: Preparing for the new math SAT [Re: Bostonian]
    bluemagic Offline
    Member

    Registered: 03/29/13
    Posts: 1489
    Originally Posted By: Bostonian
    Originally Posted By: aeh
    Our #1 just took the SAT. The essay is the first section presented, so that might be something those with writing anxiety will have to work on--don't let the essay throw you off for the rest of the test.

    I assume that once the essay becomes optional in Spring 2016, it will be given last, so that some test takers can leave.
    That really surprised me when I found out about it. My older DD only took the ACT and that did the writing part last.

    When my DS took the 'sample' test of the new format a few months back they still did the writing section first. This surprised my son & I since they test was supposed to be a sample PSAT. And the PSAT has no essay at all. My DS just didn't even try to write the essay since he knew it was only a practice test and didn't matter.

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