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Crucial Wrinkle for New Digital SAT

Updated: Nov 30, 2023

The new, digital SAT is here. Starting in 2024, students taking the SAT will no longer take paper tests. It's all on a computer. With a new format. And the test is adaptive.

Regarding the new format, it's really no big deal. There are shorter reading passages with one question per passage. The same testing strategies generally apply: connect to evidence in the passage to match to the best answer. For Math, it's the same stuff but you get a calculator the whole time.

As for the adaptive nature of the test, this is a new feature. Test adaptivity means a student who gets an answer correct will get a follow up question that is more difficult. If an answer is incorrect, students will get a follow up question that is easier. Simply put, the test will adapt to a student's level thus producing a score, after an entire section, that estimates a students college readiness.

The adaptability of the new SAT requires a key approach and a crucial wrinkle to test taking: don't stress out. Clients and followers of CROSSWALK have heard us preach stress management for years. Nothing new here.

However, the crucial wrinkle is to NOT stress about what question comes next. A student who gets an easier question might freak out because they think they answered the previous question incorrectly.

But if you freak out, you are unable to focus on the present moment.

So, much like the old paper version of the SAT, the new digital version necessitates a calm and measured approach to each question.

Take the question as they come. Once you answer a question, wash yourself of that answer and move one to the next one no matter how difficult or how easy the next question is.

The SAT may seem new, may feel new and may represent and new testing experience. But the old strategies still apply: don't stress, stay in the moment and let your brain perform its best with maximum (i.e. unstressed) focus.

Need more advice for the new, digital SAT? Contact CROSSWALK today. Happy prepping!

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