Another year tucked away, another millions would have sat for the SAT over that time. Surely, some would have “aced’ it, some “blew” it, but most just “went through with it”. As I partook in the yearend get-togethers around this part, I observed that people who have recently taken the SAT generally shied away from the topic which can only mean one thing – they have nothing in their scores to shout about.
For folks in Penang SAT is challenging in several ways, the most obvious of which must arguably be that we are non-native English speakers. In that regard, there are so many handicaps for us, specifically in the Critical Reading and Writing sections. Okay, since this is the first blog of the year, it’s perhaps fitting for me to share my thoughts on the subject of SAT Essay, the mandated first section in the SAT test.
Although the Essay is worth only about a third of the Writing Section in terms of score, it’s a big deal. In particular, there are two attributes about it that are more crucial than you think:
- Being the first section of the test, it will set the tone for the rest of the entire session no matter how cool you are. It’s like jumping out of the gate well in a horse race.
- College Admission Officers may cross check your SAT essays with your Application Essay to authenticate that you wrote the latter yourself and you would want to smell good with these guys.
Actually, there’s no need to sweat the SAT Essay; it is not difficult to “own”. It’s only a matter of knowing what the testers are looking for and just rock and roll with them. For example, they are not particularly concerned with what you write, only that you write it well. In fact, factual accuracy is not a criterion and graders are not supposed to fact check. Also, SAT essays are said to be graded holistically so they can be free-styled. But why free-style when you can have a fixed-style that rocks every time?