Have you heard that Khan Academy will be offering free online study program for the new SAT? Of course you’ve heard this, since news outlets are falling over themselves to broadcast what may appear to be an unprecedented level of open access to test material.
But free online resources for test prep have been available since before the last revision of the SAT, possibly for as long as we’ve had a functional email system. And what is great about these resources is that they come from straight from the horse’s mouth, as it were. If you are looking for free online prep for the SAT or ACT, start with each testmaker’s Question of the Day.
Why is one question a day so valuable? Mainly because these questions truly reflect both the content tested on the exams and the diverse ways that content can be tested. Any test prep professional can create “test-like” questions; nothing, however, beats the real thing.
Another advantage to the QOTD methodology is the focus on a single question at a time. The drip method of education, where material is released a little bit at a time, can be very powerful for learners willing to devote just five or ten minutes a day over time (which is why we make this the cornerstone of our Roots2Words programs!) Who can’t spare five minutes, right? One question a day doesn’t seem like much, but the cumulative impact of weeks or months of daily learning can be profound.
Every student on track to take the SAT or ACT should subscribe to the relevant Questions of the Day far in advance, either through email, Twitter, or even the designated app. And then students should solve each question as they come in, rather than letting them accumulate. Daily exposure to content and question types helps a lot in the long run. Just don’t expect that doing a question a day is enough!