Standardized tests such as the ACT and SAT can be prepared by using some form of test prep where students are acquainted with the strategies on how scores can be maximized, test structure, best approaches, etc.
However, such standard preps lead to an average vision of performance where students best stay within their limits and are not encouraged to maximize their potential. Preparations for such tests must begin from home.
For example, the reading sections of the SAT and ACT focus on the ability to read and absorb information from texts irrespective of their difficulty levels. Thus, to score higher on the reading section, traditional coaching is not necessary but the commitment to start reading online articles and relevant books are.
According to the test specifications issued by the CollegeBoard for SAT, a passage is considered to be difficult on the basis of “Language Conventionality and Clarity”, the difficulty of putting together examples and supporting arguments and on the difficulty of finding the purpose of the author to come up with a clear picture of the passage.
However, the focus remains on the ability to read a passage of 500-700 words long and make sense of it within a very short span of time. The reading capacity of the students must be increased but it can’t be increased only through solving questions but requires the ability to approach texts with concentration, confidence and interest.
Students must, therefore, start reading a spectrum of books and articles in advance of the actual test so that they become empowered readers and test-takers.
Standardized tests require much self-reflection and focus with significant cognitive demands. A test taker will have to spend 3 hours in the examination hall and focus on a range of questions that demand consistent focus which means, the test taker must be capable of handling the stress and boredom of taking the test.
This will be helped if the test taker develops a healthy reading habit which will empower them to approach these tests with enthusiasm and confidence. A good score requires more than the commitment to endure stress and boredom and requires training to circumvent these.
The student will learn the value of sustained focus and self-analysis by reading a range of texts while breaking down preset notions of reading as a boring activity.
A test taker must be encouraged to analyze their areas of improvement and e-learning is an excellent way to develop these skills as the students have a variety of information at their fingertips. The student is thus challenged to inculcate problem-solving and learns to take charge of her own test.
The need for self-evaluation and analysis cannot be overemphasized and once the student takes charge of their own preparation guided by an e-learning platform, they will be able to work towards and measure progress in real-time.
Data analytics enhances the score performance through the insights provided by it to the students and an intelligent platform guides the students through weekly engagements, learning modules and tests adapting to performance indicators. Moreover, a detailed lesson plan and personalized advice ensure that the student does not lag behind.
Monitoring by the parents at every step of the test taker’s journey is enormously helpful and a well-designed e-learning platform ensures that the parents have the details of the children’s preparation.
This provides absolute transparency in performance evaluation and goal-setting. Thus, success can be predicted on a clear view of where each student stands and their next step in the journey.