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What I’m about to say probably won’t make me popular with many high school math teachers, but here it is.Some of the stuff that you’ll prep for in the math SAT section, you might never have to learn or use again.
When it comes to the SAT essay, the College Board is very helpful—they always use exactly the same format for the SAT essay, give you exactly the same directions, and ask you to include exactly the same kind of information in your essay.
Because this never changes, you’ll know the directions ahead of time and save yourself time on the test.
Because the format and directions for the SAT essay are always the same (but the passage changes), you can memorize them and practice writing essays.
Pay close attention to doing exactly what the instructions say, spend some time thinking before writing, prioritize your points, and write clearly and well (more about that in yet another blog), and you’ll score well on this optional, but important part of the SAT.
This is not easy to do; I’m guessing, you’ve never written an essay exactly like this.
Therefore, read some of the essay samples and the responses online to see exactly how one goes about discussing how a writer persuades his or her audience.According to The College Board, all passages are written for general audiences, focus on a reasoned argument, and are taken from published works in the general areas of arts, sciences, civics, politics, or culture. In your essay, analyze how [the author] uses one or more of the features listed above (or features of your own choice) to strengthen the logic and persuasiveness of [his/her] argument.They all require analysis of complex, subtle subject matter. Be sure that your analysis focuses on the most relevant features of the passage.Here’s what you’ll see on the essay portion of the SAT. The prompt (question) shown below, or a nearly identical one, is used for every essay question.First there’s a passage for you to read and analyze. Write an essay in which you explain how [the author] builds an argument to persuade [his/her] audience that [author’s claim].An important first step is to know the directions, which won’t change test day since the SAT will recycle them, word-for-word, as they appear below.“Consider how the author (the name will change each time) uses It’s good to know how writers go about persuading us.Your essay should not explain whether you agree with [the author’s] claims, but rather explain how the author builds an argument to persuade [his/her] audience.You’ll have 50 minutes to write the essay, which will come at the end of the SAT.You’re given two double-sided, lined pages to write on, so be sure you can include everything you want to say in that space, but don’t feel you need to fill up all the pages.Writing just for the sake of taking up space is a bad idea, and one the readers will recognize and penalize you for.