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Higher Test Scores and Scholarships

Can higher test Scores help win college scholarships? THAT is the question and we have the answers!

Higher Test Scores and College Scholarships

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Have you heard the news? The #CampusChat Twitter chat has moved to a new time! We are now chatting from 1-2pm, est, every Wednesday. This week’s chat is a scholarship chat and I’m proud to introduce my guest, Lauren Gaggioli. Lauren can be found @HigherScores on Twitter, so make sure you are following her.

All about Lauren:  Lauren Gaggioli is a Number 2 Pencil Nerd. (At least, that’s what her dad nicknamed her in high school because she actually enjoyed taking tests.) After graduating from NYU with a BFA in Theater, Lauren rediscovered her love of scantrons and began tutoring the ACT and SAT throughout Southern California. She is the founder of Higher Scores Test Prep, an online SAT & ACT prep company. She is also the host of The College Checklist Podcast, a weekly podcast about all things college admissions. Lauren continues to take the SAT & ACT today and enjoys the experience just as much as she did in high school.

Don’t miss this #CampusChat as we discuss and share how higher test scores can help students win more college scholarships!

  • What:      #CampusChat Twitter Chat
  • When:      Wednesday, January 13 (Did you miss the chat? No worries, the text is below!)
  • Time:       1:00-2:00pm, EST
  • Topic:      How Higher Test Scores Help Win College Scholarships
  • Guest:     Lauren Gaggioli @HigherScores
  • Host:       Monica Matthews @AidScholarship

Q1.  What is the role of standardized test scores in the scholarship process?  #CampusChat

A1a Some scholarship advisors estimate over 60% of scholarship applications require test scores these days. #CampusChat

A1b The good news is that test scores may be required but they may not be the deciding factor. #CampusChat

A1c Students may need scores to apply, but they shouldn’t let low scores deter them from a good-fit scholarship. #CampusChat

Q2   How can increasing test scores help students win more scholarships?  #CampusChat

A2a  The scholarship process is becoming more competitive and more similar to college admissions each year. #CampusChat

A2b Higher scores give students a competitive edge over other applicants for scholarships that are based heavily on scores. #CampusChat

A2c Or they may serve as a tie-breaker in a close competition. Either way, you should have a score you’re proud of! #CampusChat

Q3   How do you help students increase their test scores?  #CampusChat

A3a Quality test prep focuses on 2 things: academic review and score-specific strategies. #CampusChat

A3b My online courses follow a clear study plan that is completed primarily through video tutorials on those 2 topics. #CampusChat

A3c My on-demand video tutorials help busy students learn everything they need to know to do their best on the test! #CampusChat

Q4   What are the main differences between the ACT and SAT?  #CampusChat

A4a The ACT and SAT were quite different, but with the new SAT arriving March 2016 the gap between them is narrowing. #CampusChat

A4b New SAT has 2 math tests, one of which doesn’t allow a calculator. ACT has 1 with a calculator allowed. #CampusChat

A4c ACT has a science section. SAT does not. Also, the new SAT essay requires outside knowledge to complete. #CampusChat

Q5   Do you recommend students take the ACT, SAT, or both?  Why?  #CampusChat

A5a I used to recommend that students take both; however, with the changes coming to the tests, I no longer do. #CampusChat

A5b Since the exams are becoming similar, I encourage students to take a practice test *at home* – one of each. #CampusChat

A5c Once they’ve experienced both, they can see which they do better on and commit to preparing for that exam. #CampusChat

A5d You can find free ACT and SAT practice tests to print and take at home at higherscorestestprep.com/15free. #CampusChat

Q6   What are 3 ACT strategies students can use?  #CampusChat

A6a Accuracy is more important than speed! Timing is ACT’s tool to jam up your brain. Stay calm and do the work. #CampusChat

A6b You won’t finish each section. That’s 100% fine, but make sure you fill in every bubble before time is called. #CampusChat

A6c Science is the least familiar section for most students. Complete a few practice passages before test day. #CampusChat

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Q7   What are 3 SAT strategies that will help students?  #CampusChat

A7a The new SAT has no guessing penalty – a big change from the current 2400 SAT. Make sure you fill in every bubble. #CampusChat

A7b Don’t wing it! Work through some new SAT math problems by hand (no calculator!) before the test. #CampusChat

A7c You’ll be asked questions about words with multiple meanings. Use context to decide which definition is correct. #CampusChat

Q8   How is your program different from how schools teach students to take the SAT/ACT?  #CampusChat

A8a Teachers are amazing at helping students understand a subject deeply. That’s so important as a foundation. #CampusChat

A8b The challenge is that most students work too hard on these tests. They know too much and don’t know what to apply. #CampusChat

A8c I teach students to step back and use what they know in a more simplified way. #CampusChat

A8d I still take the ACT and SAT as an adult. I teach the exact testing strategies that I use every time I test. #CampusChat

Q9 What about the new SAT? Should students take the new exam this spring? #CampusChat

A9a I am a very conservative test prep advisor so would never advise sending students in to take an untried exam. #CampusChat

A9b I am encouraging students to hold off on taking the new SAT at least until the curve has been set after the March exam. #CampusChat

A9c I’m taking the new SAT in March. I’m happy to be a guinea pig, but students shouldn’t be! #CampusChat

A9d In short, avoid the new SAT. Stick with the ACT until Fall 2016. #CampusChat

Q10   Please share your 3 best tips for students who will be taking the SAT or ACT this year.  #CampusChat

A10a These tests are mental marathons. You don’t run 26.2 on a whim. Prepare yourself for the mental challenge. #CampusChat

A10b Use a paid course, a book, free materials on Khan Academy – but do something. Preparation breeds confidence. #CampusChat

A10c Use the same letter when you fill in any blank bubbles. You’ll earn more points from your guesses. #CampusChat

A10d Follow these 8 tips the week before the exam to help you stay calm and do your best on test day. #CampusChat

A10e Lastly – it’s not about crossing the finish line. It’s about gaining as many points as possible along the way. #CampusChat

A10f Never forget: ACCURACY > SPEED   #CampusChat

How Higher Test Scores Help Win College Scholarships

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