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Writing Suggestions: SAT Essays

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1 Writing Suggestions: SAT Essays
Kortman Adapted from multiple sources

2 Writing Section --- Written Essay:
Write a short (about words), persuasive essay on an assigned topic Keep in mind the structure of an essay - 5 paragraphs consisting of an: Introduction, Body (about 3 paragraphs), Conclusion The allotted time frame is 25 minutes Read the essay question quickly and think about the topic (about 5 minutes) Allow most of your time (about 15 minutes) to write the essay Spend the remaining 5 minutes reviewing and editing your work

3 Writing Section --- Written Essay:
Introductory Paragraph should state the position that is being taken. It should also state about 3 points that support this position The Body Paragraphs should expand the points that you present with specific detail and examples The Concluding Paragraph should summarize your point of view by restating the thesis statement in a revised format Keep your writing simple. Avoid wordiness and slang

4 Things to look for in SAT Writing
Point of View Critical Thinking Types of Evidence Organization Use of Language

5 Point of View SAT prompts are designed to enable students to offer multiple points of view, not just one or two It’s okay to move away from a clear “yes” or “no” position Acknowledging the paradox inherent in the prompt can be a good starting point An effectively and insightfully developed essay in support of one of the two clear sides presented in the prompt will also score well

6 Critical Thinking An essay does not have to include abstract reasoning or a discussion of the writing of great philosophers to show outstanding critical thinking Successful writers use critical thinking to engage the complexity of the issue rather than “dumbing it down” for the sake of clarity Critical thinking can be displayed through insightful selection and interpretations of different types of examples Outstanding critical thinkers may provide or apply new contexts, terms or frames of reference to the issue under consideration

7 Types of Evidence Many students turn to history and literature for evidence to support their point of view; others refer to science or current events Examples from personal experience can also be very effective Reasons and personal observations that are logical and well supported are considered strong pieces of evidence The type of examples does not matter as much as the students’ demonstrated ability to develop the example in a useful way

8 Organization There are other ways to organize an essay beyond the popular five-paragraph/three example model Including only one example or two related examples help ensure that examples are fully developed Essays may feature internal organization, such as sequential or chronological presentation of events in a narrative A successful essay need not have a finished conclusion

9 Use of Language Demonstrate an effective control over the English Language Utilize language comparable to a collegiate setting

10 Final Tips Get some sleep, being well rested is more important than last minute cramming Eat a protein-rich breakfast Get to the test site early, don’t start the test under stress Chewing gum has been shown in some studies to help with focus and increase test scores, figure out how you work best

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