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SAT Instructor Dan M. shows you three examples of complex SAT Math problems that can be solved quickly using math strategies.
Things you will learn include:
1. Look to simplify and cancel out like terms
2. Remember your exponent rules and always try to get bases the same
3. Don’t overanalyze graphs
4. When roman numerals are involved, answer one roman numeral at a time and eliminate as you go.
What was your biggest takeaway from these strategies? Do you have any SAT math questions for Dan and Alexis Avila?
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You will need to learn the exponent rules in preparation for the SAT and ACT tests. http://www.preppedandpolished.com Alexis Avila Founder of Prepped & Polished, LLC in South Natick, Massachusetts, teaches you the exponent rules and shows you the four common mistakes many people make with exponent rules.
For more information, visit: Prepped and Polished.com.
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What was your biggest takeaway from this podcast? Do you have any questions for Alexis Avila?
By Alexa M., SAT Math Tutoring Instructor, Prepped & Polished, LLC
This question comes up regularly, and the short answer is: it doesn’t matter. Take whichever test you feel you can do well on. Really. Even MIT does not require that you take the Math 2, though they do insist you take one of the two math tests. Unless you claim on your application that you intend to be a math, physics, or other math-intensive major, your choice of test is unlikely to make a significant difference to your application.
The College Board’s official statement on the matter is: “If you have taken trigonometry or elementary functions (precalculus) or both, received grades of B or better in these courses, and are comfortable knowing when and how to use a scientific or graphing calculator, you should select the Level 2 test. If you are sufficiently prepared to take Level 2, but elect to take Level 1 in hopes of receiving a higher score, you may not do as well as you expect. You may want to consider taking the test that covers the topics you learned most recently, since the material will be fresh in your mind.”
It is useful to be aware of the fact that scores on the two tests are not comparable. Because the Math 2 is taken primarily by those who would describe themselves as “math people”, the overall scores tend to be higher. A 700 on the Math 2 will put you at around the 50th percentile. Fortunately, colleges know this, but it can be a bit of a shock when you receive your scores (especially if you are a self-described “math person”)!
What are the differences between the two tests?
• The Math 1 directly covers plane geometry, which the Math 2 doesn’t cover at all.
• The Math 2 emphasizes a number of major topics that aren’t covered on the Math 1:
o Properties of complex numbers, not just their arithmetic
o Parametric equations
o Polar Coordinates
o Coordinate geometry in three dimensions
o A great deal more trigonometry (graphs of trigonometric functions, radians, Laws of Sines and Cosines, trigonometric equations)
o Standard deviation
If you’ve covered the topics on the Math 2, you may want to sign up for the more advanced test. You can change your mind (and your tutoring!) up to two weeks before the test, so there is no harm in starting to prepare for the Math 2 and then deciding you are not ready for it.
Below is a more detailed chart of the differences between the two tests:
Alexa graduated from Reed College and earned a Master’s degree in math from the University of Pennsylvania. She has tutored students at every age and level from 10 to adult and from basic math through AP calculus, multivariate calculus and beyond.
Are you gearing up for the Math Level 1 or Level 2 Test?
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Alexis Avila Founder/President of Prepped & Polished, LLC in South Natick, Massachusetts shows you on his whiteboard one crucial mistake you do not want to make on the SSAT Math section.
After you do your math steps, make sure you go back to the question and answer exactly what the question is asking.
Full Word-for-Word Transcription
So just remember, you could be a really good math student, but not do well
on the SSAT math if you keep making careless mistakes. Avoid careless
mistakes and you’ll do well on the SSAT math section.
I’ll talk to you soon. Good luck.
How do you avoid making careless mistakes on the SSAT Math Section? Have you fallen trap to this type of question before?
Alexis Avila Founder/President of Prepped & Polished, LLC demonstrates on his whiteboard what not to do when solving an SSAT math problem.
Make sure that you pay attention to the units of measurement on a math question, and when necessary, make sure you convert the units of measurement.
Do you make careless mistakes on the SSAT math section? How do you avoid making careless errors on this section?
Alexis Avila, Founder/President of Prepped & Polished, LLC will provide students with a review of the types of mathematical problems found on the SAT and offers test-taking strategies for the exam. We will review algebra and geometry, focusing on students’ specific needs and areas of difficulty, and utilize actual SAT practice test problems. Emphasis will be placed on what to practice in preparation for the exam, how to practice, and strategies to help maximize your score. Students are encouraged to bring questions. Please bring a calculator, pencil, and notebook to class.
“As someone who worked with clients of Alexis, I know that he always made certain that I was as well prepared as I could be to deliver the best tutoring services possible. His tutors reflect his level of organization, dedication, and excellence.”
Alexis Avila Founder/President of Prepped & Polished offers advice on how to avoid careless mistakes on the math portion of the SAT test.
Underlining or circling the key words in the math question will help you to avoid careless mistakes by forcing you to read the problem carefully and know exactly what you are looking for.
Hi everyone, Alexis Avila, founder of Prepped and Polished LLC. Now many
SAT students, even top level SAT students, make careless mistakes on their
SAT, especially on the math section.
Now remember if you make ten careless mistakes on the SAT math section,
that can cost you between 100 and 150 points, so you want to avoid careless
mistakes and this is how you do it. You’re going to underline and circle or
box key words in the math question.
For example, if A equals 2 x 4 x 6 x 8 and B equals 6 x 8, what’s the
remainder when A is divided by B. So what’s important in this question,
well, we need to know A so we’ve underlined that, and B is 6 x 8, what is
the remainder? I’m going to circle the remainder when A is divided by B.
Now you’re going to solve the question really carefully.
You’re going to clearly take A and divide it by B. So we’re going to say 2
x 4 x 6 x 8 divided by 6 x 8 which is B, we’re going to cancel and then
we’re going to solve and see that when A is divided by B you get 8. Now
this is where a lot of students make a mistake, even top level students.
They’re going to get so excited and wrapped around the fact that they
solved the question that A is 8 that they are going to circle E.
We’re going careful work and so we know that we are looking for the
remainder, and the remainder is clearly zero, there is no remainder when A
is divided by B. You’re going to circle A and move on. We’ve done careful
work. Now what you’re going to do to avoid careless mistakes in the math
section is you’re going to underline or circle key concepts, key words in
the math question. And then you’re going to reread the question and know
exactly what to look for in the SAT question.
I wish you good luck, and I’ll talk to you soon.
Did you find this SAT Math tip helpful? What are some other ways to avoid careless math mistakes on the SAT?
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