Since the math questions are presented in an increasing order of difficulty, dividing the section roughly into thirds will help you manage the section.You do not need a perfect score on the math section to do well on the SAT. Spend time answering the questions that you have the best shot at answering correctly. The last two or three questions on the test might take you several minutes each to answer. That time might be better spent going over some of the earlier questions where you had to make some guesses.
Sometime, somewhere in your last ten or eleven years of schooling, you have seen multiple choice questions. Most students are happy to take a multiple-choice test rather than an essay or fill-in-the-blank test, so you may be happy to find out that more than two-thirds of the SAT Math section is made up of multiple-choice questions. Of course, the SAT might be a little sneakier in their use of multiple choice questions than your seventh grade Social Studies teacher.
This series of lesson articles will go over SAT Test Math Answer Choices. The series includes:
- Multiple Choice Questions for SAT Math
- Eliminating SAT Math Answer Choices
- SAT Math Student-Produced Responses (Answer Grids)
Multiple-Choice Questions for SAT Math
There are two basic approaches to an SAT Math section multiple-choice question:
- Do you understand the basic concept involved, are you comfortable with the question, is it straightforward, is it in the easy section? If the answer is ‘yes’ to any of these questions, you should attempt to solve the problem first and then find the answer choice that meets your solution.
- Are you unfamiliar with the concepts involved or unsure where to start to get a solution? Then you should consider skipping the question and returning to use the process of elimination.
Attempting to solve the problem is usually faster than going through the process of elimination because you do one solution and then select a single matching answer. In the process of elimination you might have to test as many as four different answer choices. (Ed. Note: Why four and not five? Because if the first four answer you test are incorrect, you shouldn’t waste time testing the fifth answer choice. One of them has to be correct. In fact, as you will see later, you should never really have to plug in more than three answer choices if you always start with (C) as your first guess.)
When solving the problem first without plugging in answer choices, don’t select an answer until you have finished your solution. The SAT test is very good at presenting you with tempting wrong answers that look good at the half-way point of a math solution. Get to your solution first, and then scan for it in the answer choices. The only exception is when further calculation would not get you anywhere. For example, if the answer choices are rounded to two decimal places there is no point in calculating beyond that.
Next, Review our article about Eliminating SAT Math Answer Choices.