SAT/ACT Tips: Time Eaters!
If you are anything like high school Martin—that is, the way I was in high school—, then you might have the tendency to focus on things you can’t do instead of things you can do. Here is how you might know if you are like high school Martin: if you are taking the ACT or SAT math section and you hit a problem you can’t do, do you, (A) not worry about it, skip it, and move to the next one, or (B) frustratingly stare at it for way too long thinking that the answer will just come to you in a flash. If you answered B, then you might be suffering from high school Martin syndrome—also known as a mild case of perfectionism.
Perfectionism can be a real downer on both the SAT and ACT. It can be the kryptonite that causes an otherwise highly capable student to bomb a particular section. Think about this scenario: you are taking the ACT and you get to question 15. You read it and think about it for 15 seconds and you have no idea how to do it. You have 2 choices in that moment: 1) Stare at it for a few minutes, freak out, and not get to most of the remaining questions, or 2) Breathe and calmly move to the next question, which, chances are, you probably know how to do! You can probably imagine which one is the better choice.
So here’s the tip: don’t let a difficult question on the SAT or ACT waste your valuable time. Remember that every question on both of these tests, regardless of the difficulty level, is worth the same amount of points. So, relax, breathe, and don’t fall prey to the time eaters!
Are you a perfectionist? How might you handle a difficult question on the SAT or ACT? Leave a response or thought in the comments section below!