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Duke University
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Unweighted GPA: 3.7
SAT: 720 math
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History SAT passages - strategies?

Hi everyone! Does anyone have any tips on how to tackle history passages in the SAT Reading section? I find them difficult and time-consuming, and I want to improve my score before senior year.

6 months ago

Hello! I completely understand how challenging and time-consuming historical passages on the SAT can be. However, with the right strategies, you can definitely improve your performance. Here are some tips to help you tackle history passages:

1. Familiarize Yourself with Common Themes: Knowing the common themes that appear in SAT history passages, such as revolutions, civil rights movements, or historical analyses, will help you feel more comfortable when you encounter these texts.

2. Develop a Reading Strategy: Skimming or reading the passage in a specific order (e.g., introduction, conclusion, then individual paragraphs) can help you grasp the main ideas and provide a solid foundation for answering questions. Find the method that works best for you and practice with it.

3. Focus on the Main Ideas and the Passage's Structure: While reading, prioritize understanding the author's main argument, purpose, and the structure of the passage. This way, you'll have a clearer overview to refer back to when tackling questions.

4. Use Context Clues: If you come across unfamiliar words, try to use context clues to understand how they contribute to the overall meaning of the passage.

5. Answer the Line Reference Questions First: Questions that refer to specific lines or portions of the passage are often easier to answer, and doing so may help you better understand the passage as a whole. Complete these questions first before moving on to the main idea or inference questions.

6. Eliminate Wrong Answer Choices: Answer choices that seem out of scope, too extreme, or unrelated to the passage's main idea are likely incorrect. Use the process of elimination to narrow down your choices and select the best one.

7. Manage Your Time: Keep track of the time you're spending on each passage and question. If you find yourself stuck, move on to the next question and return later if time allows.

8. Practice: The more you practice, the more comfortable you'll become with historical passages. Use official practice tests or other SAT prep materials to hone your skills and track your progress.

By implementing these strategies and consistently practicing, you'll surely improve your performance on history passages in the SAT Reading section. Good luck!

6 months ago

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