Kristina's Complete Guide To Subject Tests: How To Ace Your SAT IIs

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It’s getting to be that time of year! Test dates are looming and junior spring is in full, hectic swing. My students are looking stressed, their parents are looking harried…and I get it. So today I’m offering just the resources you absolutely need right now to tackle a timely and urgent situation that sometimes gets pushed to the back burner: the SAT II Subject Tests. Together, these make a complete guide to maximizing both your time AND your SAT II scores.

So let’s not waste any more of that precious time—we’ll just get started setting you on the path to SAT II success (and the peace of mind that comes with having a plan!). Ready? Here we go…

First, plot your course to SAT II success.

The first thing you need to do is pick your tests. My baseline recommendation is that students take the Literature test and whichever Math Subject Test best suits their skill set. If that baseline plan doesn’t make sense for you, you might need a customized solution—in which case, I’m here for you. If it does…

Master SAT II Math!

Trust me to have math covered, right? (If you know enough to answer yes to that one, hang tight—I’ve got a series coming up that will really take your math chops up a notch.) So, the first thing to do is pick your test. My guides will tell you EXACTLY which math subjects are covered on which Subject Test, so check them out. They also lay out a basic plan of attack and study timeline to make the most of the time between now and your chosen test date(s). Here’s my Failproof Study Guide for the SAT II Math Level I — and here’s my Failproof Study Guide for the SAT II Math Level II. Pick your poison and have at it!

Now, here’s your COMPLETE cheat sheet for the Math SAT II Subject Tests—BOTH of them. This guide offers you all the concrete material you need to ace Math I and Math II in a nutshell. So get cracking!

So that brings us to the next order of business…


Level up that SAT II Literature!

I recommend the Subject Test in Literature because it takes advantage of many of the same skills and content areas that you’re working on anyway, giving you more bang for your test-prep time “buck.” And lucky for you, I’ve mapped out a basic way of spending that time here too, just like I did for the Math Subject Tests. Here’s my Failproof Study Guide for the SAT II Subject Test in Literature. And here’s a complete cheat sheet with EVERYTHING you need to ace the Literature Subject Test…you didn’t think I’d let you down on that one, did you?

So, you’ve picked your tests, planned your timeline, and gotten out the flashcards to start making the most of my cheat sheets—great work! But there’s actually one more thing I can give you to make sure that you get through your SAT II Subject Tests as smoothly and successfully as you possibly can.

It’s this piece of advice…

Even though you’re navigating a really stressful time, don’t panic—get strategic.

Believe me, I know how busy this time is. I see it day in and day out in my office (and on my Skype screen!). Feeling stressed is TOTALLY understandable. But even if you don’t have an expert tutor in your corner to help organize your time and your strategy, you can still step back from your overstuffed to-do list and make a plan to make the most of your time and your effort. Read this post in which I walked you through how to find study time in your busy schedule. And check out my answer to a student’s despairing question about how to survive junior spring. Because I promise it’s doable.

Good luck! Don’t forget to breathe, and don’t hesitate to get in touch with me if you need personalized, one-on-one help tackling your test prep and college process.