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Predicting the October SAT: What an SAT Prep Expert Anticipates Will Be on the Test

By Laura Whitmore

Laura Whitmore, SAT Prep expert tutor, predicts what will be on the October 2023 SAT Test in her latest YouTube Video

With over 16 years under my belt as a test prep instructor, I have coached hundreds of students to significant score gains of 100+ points. How am I able to do this? Not only do I understand the content deeply (I have a 1570 super score), but I am constantly analyzing trends in the questions College Board gives so I can tell my students exactly what they need to know on their upcoming test. Given the significance of this October exam, especially for seniors, it's crucial to get insights into what might be in store.

But before we delve into my October SAT predictions, here's a quick recommendation: If you’re looking for daily practice for the digital SAT, check out Preptly. The digital SAT prep app, available for both iOS and Android, comes with an added advantage of a digital AI SAT tutor named Wisbee. It's a handy tool for those wanting to get a step ahead.

Now, for the predictions that will help steer your preparations:

1. The "Hug Slug" Passage Format: Brace yourselves for the paper test's back-to-back passage format. Dubbed as "Hug/Slug", these passages challenge you to discern the authors’ sentiments towards each other. The last test was a science hug/slug, and the pattern demonstrates that this time it will be a historical paired passage. Make sure to practice as many previous historical hug/slugs and you can get your hands on, as this is the trickiest passage of the five in the reading section!

2. Mastering Function Interpretation: SATs are increasingly emphasizing functional interpretations. My advice? Brush up on your annotation strategies to break down and simplify these problems effectively. Take the words/description in the paragraph that is below the function and just write annotations right on the function itself. It is much easier to understand what the function means once you can see it all in one place.

3. Decoding Solutions through Graphics: Understand solutions from a visual standpoint, especially related to systems of equations. A curveball might be thrown with “infinitely many solutions,” so keep your concepts clear and know graphically what happens.

  • Infinitely Many: This system will graph as one line

  • No Solution: This system will graph as parallel lines that never touch

  • One solution: This linear system will cross at one point

  • 3 Equations: This linear system of 3 lines must all intersect at one point for there to be a solution.

4. Probability Puzzles: Based on recent trends, the October SAT might test your skills on probability problems, particularly those with provided statements. Practice interpreting given data and apply probability principles to avoid common pitfalls.

5. Conversion Challenges: Square unit conversion problems have been a consistent theme. Anticipate some challenging questions in this area, such as intricate acceleration metric conversions.

6. Quadratic Quests: Quadratic equations could be pivotal. Whether it's determining the sum of solutions or deciphering the number of real solutions, remember to utilize the discriminant effectively. The discriminant (b^2 - 4ac) will determine how many real solutions there are.

7. Tackling Trigonometry: My bets are on the complementary angles rule making an appearance. It's been a favorite in recent SATs. A critical point to remember: if the sine of one angle aligns with the cosine of another, those angles complement each other (add to 90 degrees).

8. Deduction with Line Equations: There’s been a resurgence of questions revolving around determining the equation of a line when given two points. It's essential to be adept at this to ensure you don't drop easy marks. Know the slope equation and then how to get 'b' afterwards.

9. Unraveling the Math Mysteries: For those eyeing that coveted perfect score in math, here are some sharpened tips:

  • Vertical Mastery: If there's a question about objects thrown upwards, don’t forget the vertex form.

  • Discount Dynamics: When faced with sequential discounts, never sum two percentages directly. Apply each discount separately.

  • Calculator Clarity: In section four, always double-check your calculations. Your calculator isn't just an accessory; it’s a tool.

  • Documentation Discipline: Even for seemingly straightforward calculations, write every step down. This meticulous approach will safeguard against inadvertent errors.

  • Review Ritual: Ensure you allocate enough time for a thorough review. Re-solve problems from scratch, as this helps in identifying overlooked errors.

To see these predictions in more detail, please head to my October SAT Predictions: What Will be on the Test video on YouTube!

To access the questions that I used in this video to practice, please go here:

In conclusion, the road to acing the SAT might be challenging, but with the right strategies and insights, it's absolutely achievable. Equip yourself with knowledge, stay focused, and all the best in your endeavors! Happy prepping!


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