Test PreparationInformation about standardized tests such as the SAT, PSAT, and ACT
This section of Camilla’s English Page contains resources to help students prepare for popular standardized tests that include evaluation of English skills, including the PSAT, SAT, and ACT. For information about the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language), please refer to the ESL section.
Reading and Writing Skills
In part, performance on these tests reflects the reading and writing skills that students naturally develop in the course of their studies. Many of the resources in the Grammar, Literature, and Writing sections of this site can help students develop those skills (which are of course useful for far more than just taking tests). The Common Grammar Errors page in particular is a good starting point to gain familiarity with the grammar concepts covered on standardized tests.
Although knowledge of advanced vocabulary is no longer emphasized by these tests as much as it once was, systematic vocabulary study is still beneficial to students who have to take them and is helpful more generally as well. Success in many college courses and careers requires a broad and nuanced vocabulary. See the Vocabulary section of the site for a selection of recommended books and a comprehensive set of Quizlet lists to help students review the words presented in the books.
Of course, standardized tests are an artificial means of evaluation and for various reasons are never a perfect reflection of students’ actual knowledge and skills. Therefore, it’s also helpful to learn skills specific to taking such tests, to become familiar with the format of the tests, and to take practice tests. This section includes basic information about each test and links to additional resources, including practice tests.
For shorter-term preparation tailored specifically to standardized tests, I prefer to use materials produced by the test makers themselves, as even the best third-party materials don’t perfectly duplicate the actual tests. Since these are copyrighted materials, I can’t post them on this site. See the information below for links to resources that the test makers have made publicly available.