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silverlining
06-09-2013, 12:57 AM
I nearly signed myself up for the SAT this morning. Not the subject test, but SAT I.

Do you think it's possible I self-study the syllabus? I'm in poly. How much of a difference is it compared to emaths? I'm more concerned about the math component cause I really suck at numbers *SIGH*

havok_ex
06-09-2013, 08:02 AM
Definitely very possible to self-study. The math is very much like e maths. Might have a fews Add math kind of questions though. But still, its very simple kind of math in the Singaporean context.

Anoni
06-09-2013, 09:20 AM
Definitely very possible to self-study. The math is very much like e maths. Might have a fews Add math kind of questions though. But still, its very simple kind of math in the Singaporean context.

What about the language components?

mishieru07
06-09-2013, 10:23 PM
I nearly signed myself up for the SAT this morning. Not the subject test, but SAT I.

Do you think it's possible I self-study the syllabus? I'm in poly. How much of a difference is it compared to emaths? I'm more concerned about the math component cause I really suck at numbers *SIGH*

SAT is definitely self-studiable. I self-studied and got 2250 on my first (and only) sitting.

The maths is very manageable IMO - I don't remember if it was Add Math level (if it was, it certainly wasn't the bulk of the questions) The basic questions are actually quite simple (like Sec 1 standard?). The more important thing is to be very careful with your answers. One mistake can set you back 20-30 points.

The language bits - you can buy the SAT vocab book and mug that (SAT words tend to be quite obscure IMO). That said, I got lazy and gave up fairly early, but still did okay. Go through practice papers - you'll be surprised at how counter-intuitive the grammar rules can be. Make sure you're familiar with them.

For the essay bit, I didn't do that well. It's much shorter than a Sec 4 essay (and slightly different in style) I think. Have a look at their sample essays, maybe go to the online forums like collegeconfidetial and see if there's more advice there?

If anything, I got so tremendously bored of SATs (taking a 3+ hour paper on a Saturday morning is a total kill-joy) that it gives you even more motivation to do it once and be done with it.:p Just buy the practice books and do them like a Ten-Year Series.

silverlining
06-10-2013, 02:04 AM
Definitely very possible to self-study. The math is very much like e maths. Might have a fews Add math kind of questions though. But still, its very simple kind of math in the Singaporean context.

What about the language components?

SAT is definitely self-studiable. I self-studied and got 2250 on my first (and only) sitting.

The maths is very manageable IMO - I don't remember if it was Add Math level (if it was, it certainly wasn't the bulk of the questions) The basic questions are actually quite simple (like Sec 1 standard?). The more important thing is to be very careful with your answers. One mistake can set you back 20-30 points.

The language bits - you can buy the SAT vocab book and mug that (SAT words tend to be quite obscure IMO). That said, I got lazy and gave up fairly early, but still did okay. Go through practice papers - you'll be surprised at how counter-intuitive the grammar rules can be. Make sure you're familiar with them.

For the essay bit, I didn't do that well. It's much shorter than a Sec 4 essay (and slightly different in style) I think. Have a look at their sample essays, maybe go to the online forums like collegeconfidetial and see if there's more advice there?

If anything, I got so tremendously bored of SATs (taking a 3+ hour paper on a Saturday morning is a total kill-joy) that it gives you even more motivation to do it once and be done with it.:p Just buy the practice books and do them like a Ten-Year Series.

Thanks for clearing this up for me :) I'm glad that the math isn't tough! I'm the type who will go bonkers just by looking at numbers. I would say I pick up language faster, even my o level grade in english is higher than my math (dist) which seems to be a rare case.. So i was really apprehensive about registering.

I've downloaded vocab lists and workbooks already, *should* be sufficient. And yup Ive also realized that the style of essay is different from that of o levels.. would reading reknowned literary works help for the examples? Or would just a personal example suffice..?

mishieru07
06-11-2013, 09:15 AM
Thanks for clearing this up for me :) I'm glad that the math isn't tough! I'm the type who will go bonkers just by looking at numbers. I would say I pick up language faster, even my o level grade in english is higher than my math (dist) which seems to be a rare case.. So i was really apprehensive about registering.

I've downloaded vocab lists and workbooks already, *should* be sufficient. And yup Ive also realized that the style of essay is different from that of o levels.. would reading reknowned literary works help for the examples? Or would just a personal example suffice..?

Haha, I count myself as someone who doesn't have an affinity with numbers so don't worry too much :p I would be very careful about the language bit though. It's really NOT that easy. I've always been pretty good at English but I got stumped at the vocab and grammar. The former is MUCH more obscure than what you'd normally encounter in everyday life (beyond the level of something like the Economist or New York Times, which is already beyond Straits Times). You just don't come across words like corpulent, perfidy or invidious very often. IMO, the best way is to hard-core mug, but I got lazy. It's also good to double-check the dictionary - I was quite surprised at how wrong my definitions could be. Work on nailing those grammar rules too.

Well I think the collegeboard sample essay used personal examples? I am personally not in favour of using personal anecdotes in an argumentative/ descriptive essay, but it should be fine? I don't think it's really a question about reading renowned literary works actually (I'm thinking along the lines of Shakespeare, Orwell, F Scott Fitzgerald, Dickens here) - if you ask me, you might well be better off reading the newspapers or magazines like Time. The classic Literature texts can be pretty long and meaty (although I'd certainly advocate reading them in your free time anyway!) I'd say general knowledge would be more useful to prepare for SATs - they're not expecting a Literature style answer (unless you're writing an essay specifically on something Lit-based, where Lit examples would be helpful)

Make sure the papers you downloaded are the legitimate ones though - when in doubt, I'd stick with the official collegeboard one or any of the big publishers like Princeton Review or McGraw-Hill. Go through the papers, time yourself, and if possible, do a full length test (yes, the whole 3+ hour test). In fact, do it multiple times, especially if you're not accustomed to long periods of concentration/ long exams. You need to practise to keep your stamina and concentration up throughout - it gets very tiring towards the end.

Good luck!

catfret
06-11-2013, 01:05 PM
How is the essay portion in SAT for poly students who have no background on the structures for planning the write up compared to JC students?

Manageable?

I will be taking my SAT in the upcoming Oct as I'm intending to apply to US universities.

Any tips? :)

randomtty
06-11-2013, 05:32 PM
How is the essay portion in SAT for poly students who have no background on the structures for planning the write up compared to JC students?

Manageable?

I will be taking my SAT in the upcoming Oct as I'm intending to apply to US universities.

Any tips? :)

I think it doesn't give you a disadvantage compared to JC students. The essay is just not very Singaporean exam like.

I would say that the vocab and grammar can be tricky, whereas math should be a piece of cake, even for primary school kids.

silverlining
06-12-2013, 02:13 PM
Haha, I count myself as someone who doesn't have an affinity with numbers so don't worry too much :p I would be very careful about the language bit though. It's really NOT that easy. I've always been pretty good at English but I got stumped at the vocab and grammar. The former is MUCH more obscure than what you'd normally encounter in everyday life (beyond the level of something like the Economist or New York Times, which is already beyond Straits Times). You just don't come across words like corpulent, perfidy or invidious very often. IMO, the best way is to hard-core mug, but I got lazy. It's also good to double-check the dictionary - I was quite surprised at how wrong my definitions could be. Work on nailing those grammar rules too.

Well I think the collegeboard sample essay used personal examples? I am personally not in favour of using personal anecdotes in an argumentative/ descriptive essay, but it should be fine? I don't think it's really a question about reading renowned literary works actually (I'm thinking along the lines of Shakespeare, Orwell, F Scott Fitzgerald, Dickens here) - if you ask me, you might well be better off reading the newspapers or magazines like Time. The classic Literature texts can be pretty long and meaty (although I'd certainly advocate reading them in your free time anyway!) I'd say general knowledge would be more useful to prepare for SATs - they're not expecting a Literature style answer (unless you're writing an essay specifically on something Lit-based, where Lit examples would be helpful)

Make sure the papers you downloaded are the legitimate ones though - when in doubt, I'd stick with the official collegeboard one or any of the big publishers like Princeton Review or McGraw-Hill. Go through the papers, time yourself, and if possible, do a full length test (yes, the whole 3+ hour test). In fact, do it multiple times, especially if you're not accustomed to long periods of concentration/ long exams. You need to practise to keep your stamina and concentration up throughout - it gets very tiring towards the end.

Good luck!



I think it doesn't give you a disadvantage compared to JC students. The essay is just not very Singaporean exam like.

I would say that the vocab and grammar can be tricky, whereas math should be a piece of cake, even for primary school kids.


Thanks for the advice! I really appreciate it, although I have to admit it scared me a little.. lol :D I guess I'd hard core memorize then, especially focusing on English.

The collegeboard essays used personal examples but I read some at collegeconfidential that referenced literary figures. So was wondering bout that.. I even went to the extent of downloading the whole SAT reading list which I later realized was for SAT II Lit *facepalm*

The papers I downloaded are all published books namely Dr. Chungs, Barron's etc. and I got the blue book as well. I think the toughest part for me is juggling between poly coursework and studying for this, possibly work as well but I'll try to squeeze out some time!