Three budget-friendly ways to prepare for the SAT and ACT

Image of student's hand holding a pencil and marking a test paper

Check out these low cost and useful resources that, with a little determination, could make all the difference in your test scores.

Preparing for the SAT and ACT is a priority for being accepted to your dream school, but that doesn’t mean it should drain your bank account. Private tutors can cost upward of $150+ per hour, and official SAT prep books can set you back $25 each.

Before you reach for your wallet, check out these inexpensive and useful resources that, with a little determination, could make all the difference in your test scores.

Vocabulary apps

The more words you can understand on the tests, the better off you’ll be. Download a mobile app like SAT Flashcard Review or Magoosh SAT Vocabulary Flashcards for vocab flashcards. That way, you can practice on the go, whether it’s during casual conversations outside of school or during the school day to impress your friends and teachers.

Practice exams

Taking SAT and ACT practice tests is a valuable study tool, because it’s the closest you’ll get to the real deal. A multitude of practice tests are available for low or no cost online through College Board SAT and PowerScore. These sites provide several versions of the exams so you can be better prepared for whatever questions you’ll see come test day.

Online resources

Several companies supply online prep resources for no cost, but it’s important to make sure they’re supplying legitimate SAT and ACT insight. Sites like Khan Academy and PrepScholar offer low cost tools and advice for acing the SAT and ACT with vocabulary practice, fine-tuned math skills, strategies for taking the test, and additional information about the tests themselves. Also, utilize various YouTube channels that can walk you through test strategies and questions. Channels like RadicalPrep and Mometrix Test Preparation show you step by step how to tackle the SAT and ACT.

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