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It's almost Test Day! With the SAT coming up this weekend, aren't you excited?? I sure am! And in an effort to mimic those celebrity Q&A’s where Cosmo asks Taylor Swift for the contents of her bag, I decided to do the same, in the form of a checklist. So here are the contents that SHOULD be in YOUR bag before you leave the house this Saturday (or Sunday, if you observe the Sabbath) to take the SAT. This check list of what to bring on test day applies whenever you take an SAT or ACT.
7 Things to Bring on Test Day:
1. Your Admission Ticket! After all, you have to make sure you’re really registered for the SAT or ACT. This should have your photo on it and necessary information so the testing Powers That Be don’t accidentally let in some 50-yr-old engineer dude sporting a pocket protector to take the test for 17-yr-old Kelly. The College Board and ACT get a bad rap when they let things like that happen.
2. Your Photo ID! This is the 2nd line of defense to make sure you are really you and not creepy previously-mentioned engineer dude.
3. Your Calculator! Preferably a graphing calculator you are comfortable using. There are several from Texas Instruments, like the TI 83, TI 86, etc. Your calculator can be scientific and graphing, but it cannot connect to the Internet, be attached to a laptop or phone, or have a QWERTY keyboard. Please make sure you check the batteries to make sure they don’t run out on you… that totally BLOWS!
4. Pencils, pencils, and then more pencils. I always used to use mechanical pencils, but the SAT doesn’t like those for the Essay. Feel free to use them for the multiple choice. And make sure the eraser actually erases, please.
5. Layers of clothing. I don’t care if it’s 20 degrees right now, you ever know which testing center (i.e. high school) is going to be too cheap to use the heat, or so over-zealous as to cook you alive. The same fear abounds when it’s sweltering out. Some places will freeze you to over-compensate, while others try to save on their AC bill and hope your sweating and panting doesn’t force you to bubble outside the cute little circles. The best remedy? Dress in layers that you can remove or add on as needed. A trusty hoody is great for this.
6. Water. If you’re taking a 4 hr long SAT, you really need to make sure you don’t get dehydrated. Do you know what happens when you get dehydrated, little SAT Vixen? That’s right: you get tired. Or else you start getting thirsty on a conscious level, in which case your random thoughts are “I’m thirsty! When is this section over?!” – while you reread that short passage 4 times in a loop because you can’t hold your focus. You get the idea. Just hydrate.
7. Snacks. Guess what’s worse than getting thirty or deciding you need to use the restroom the moment the math section starts? Getting hungry rumblings in your tummy. Not only is it embarrassing when everyone looks searchingly around the room to uncover the source of your loud hunger pangs, but the moment you notice you’re hungry, it’s too late! You’re now thinking of that instead of cross-multiplying those proportions. Bring something nourishing and easy to eat, like a Luna bar or an apple, and eat a little bit during each of your breaks to keep your blood sugar and energy (and thus, focus) steady.
So, now that you’re ready, good luck and show that SAT who's boss!!
I love being able to help as many high schoolers as possible reach their testing goals, so if you've found this list of what to bring on test day at all useful, please pass it along to 3 of your friends!