High school students preparing for the SAT, or for that matter going through the whole college admissions process, may need a lesson in time management. Between SAT preparation, school assignments and studying, and all the extracurricular activities in which they find themselves involved, students today have a lot on their plates. Yet each obligation, in its own way, plays an important role in college admittance:
- High GPA
- High SAT scores
- Involvement in Extracurriculars, Athletics, Community Service to fill up an college activity resume
SAT preparation and “regular school” are often separate endeavors. SAT prep tends to be a different type of “homework.” Students may get home from school right before their SAT tutor comes over, or perhaps they’re spending a portion of their weekend at an SAT class or studying from their own test prep manual. Whatever the case, SAT preparation isn’t usually integrated into the typical school day, but doing so could very well serve to benefit students and teachers.
New York based educational services company, A-List Education (http://www.alisteducation.com/), is trying to bring schools and SAT prep together with a new kind of SAT program. The sat teacher training program involves providing the schools with the resources necessary to manage their own, in-house SAT preparation courses that can be offered at no cost to their students. Expert SAT tutors equip school English and math teachers with the content and strategies needed to master the SAT. Teachers receive A-List’s extensive suite of SAT materials including the online vocabulary system, Vocab Videos (http://www.vocabvideos.com/), and companion teacher aids that not only provide explanations of answers but also the reasoning behind common mistakes students make and how to correct them. A-List consults school administrators to develop a customized curriculum and course structure, and stays involved throughout the program providing detailed score reports to assess each student’s progress, indicate to teachers where a student is struggling, and suggest techniques to help improve scores.
Here are a few reasons why an SAT course is important and why running it in a school could be the way to go:
- A bad SAT score can tarnish an otherwise impressive academic record.
- When it comes to the SAT, it’s less about what you know (the content learned in school) than how you apply it (through various SAT strategies).
- The program allows teachers, who have first-hand knowledge of students’ proficiencies, to build on their relationships with students and provide them with an SAT program that is fundamentally tailored to their needs.
- By the time most students take the SAT, their math classes are teaching concepts far beyond what they will need on the test. English classes in school tend to focus on literature, specific books and literary history, while the SAT tests general reading comprehension without any specific literary knowledge.
- Establishing separate classes specifically geared toward SAT preparation can ensure that students gain and refine the skills they need without sacrificing time from other classes.
- Subsidizing the cost will shift the burden of cost away from the students, who may not be able to afford the best courses.
- Holding courses during the school day will make it easier for students to attend without sacrificing time for schoolwork, sports, or the arts.
- The school’s imprimatur upon the classes will make students take the work more seriously than they would independent classes, which are often viewed as extracurricular and therefore optional.
- Training faculty in new subject matter will create a new level of valuable expertise in staff that can grow stronger and more refined over the years
An in-school SAT program of this kind gives high schools the capability to develop sustainable, high-quality programming that they can continually offer to students.