Searching online for a practice test in book or PDF form can make it tough to choose the right one. There are so many to choose from and most of them seem legitimate so how does one make the decision? It is recommended that when selecting practicing tests, you only use official SAT World History practice tests because they will give you the most accurate representation of the types of questions and prompts you will see on your real exam day. If you’re looking for more budget friendly practice, study.com has a 50 question practice test that will present many of the concepts and time periods that will be on the actual test but there is no guarantee that it will get you any closer to the score you want. Planning to take the test involves developing a schedule and organizing a method of attack.

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Finding the best book, app or tutoring program will be key to your SAT success.  (Photo by Iñaki del Olmo on Upsplash)

Finding The Right Practice Test

Better practice tests can be found with partnering companies like Kaplan who develops books, apps, and tutoring programs to help students prepare for the various SAT subject tests. This company has a reputation for providing valuable insight into the strategies that will make the biggest improvement on your test score. They can help you develop a study plan that fits with your daily schedule as well as materials to review in preparation for the big day.

Local tutoring services are also a great resource as many of the tutors have taken the exams themselves and can recount to you first hand their experiences and recommendations. Finding a person or programs that makes sense to you and fits with your learning style and schedule is a challenge to say the least. Be sure that whichever program you do select properly prepares you for the test.

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Keep in mind that most colleges will not require a perfect score on the test so you can adjust your ideal score for the colleges that you desire most.  (Photo by Sarah Noltner on Upsplash)

Layout of the Exam

The practice tests should look like the real test. What does the real test look like? The official World History Subject Test contains 95 questions with a time limit of 60 minutes. You can deduce from the hour long test that time management will be incredibly important if you are going to get through the test and choose as many correct answers as possible . Unlike other SAT exams, this subject test will deduct a quarter point for each wrong answer selected so it is best not to guess on a question. For every correct answer, you will be awarded one point. The overall test will be scored to a range of 800 points. Keep in mind that most colleges will not require a perfect score on the test so you can adjust your ideal score for the colleges that you desire most. Changing your aim will mean that your can focus your time on other aspects of the test.

The 800 points is derived from three styles of questions. There is the ‘Cause and Effect’, ‘Image Based’ and ‘Identification’. The cause and effect questions will ask you to determine how or why an event in history developed and what led to it happening. The Image based questions will present maps, symbols and cultural markers to be interpreted based on your knowledge of that region or time period. The Identification style of question focuses on describing ideologies or events in history and how they are most accurately represented. Identifying these three types in the practice test and ultimately on the real test will convert to a large improvement on score.

post of an old time map of the world
Finding the right environment to practice will allow you be feel comfortable when the test day arrives.  (Photo by Siora Photography on Upsplash)

Best Ways to Practice

Environment is a component to consider when studying. You can find a tutor or online program to provide the SAT subject test practice but taking it in the correct environment is often overlooked. When you take a practice exam, make sure you are in a quite room without distraction. You will want to simulate as much as possible how the room will be when you take the official test. You can help to build associative learning if you stick to a similar environment each time. Plus practicing your time management will get you comfortable with the 60 minutes you have to work with.

After you have finished the practice exam and tallied the score, go through each question on your own or with your tutor and try to explain why you chose that answer instead of the others. Figure out why the other answers were incorrect. From this active revision, you will better learn how the questions are worded and how the concepts are presented. It follows that you will start to derive more from each successive test and you should see a visible improvement in a short time.

How many practice tests should you take? Honestly, as many as you can fit in your schedule. The more in-the-field training you can get, the more comfortable you will feel when the day comes and that will translate to clarity of mind during the test. It is ok to take the same test multiple times as your will start to see things you may have missed on the first go around. You can also experiment with different strategies to see which one works best for you.

In any give multiple choice test, you will have 4-5 answers for any single given question. First start determining which answers are incorrect to increase your odds of selecting the correct one. For any question there are usually one or two answers that don't fit and can be eliminated early on, now when you have it down to two or three questions, that's when your odds have increased and the choice should be easier. Think of multiple choice as seeing how you can increase the probability of finding the right answer and you will do much better over all.

checking out another section of the library
From active revision, you will better learn how the questions are worded and how the concepts are presented.  (Photo by Kevin Butz on Upsplash)

Aside from Practice Tests, How Else Can You Prepare?

Books and online courses are fantastic methods of learning how to take the SAT World History test. Everyone knows that the internet is a wealth of knowledge unlike anything humanity has seen before. There are companies whose entire business revolves around supporting and preparing students for the SAT exams. Aside from full tests, organizations like the Princeton Review offers quizzes which can be seen as little snapshots of the real thing. The quizzes can be very helpful as they will often focus on a specific region of the world or events in a single century. The increased specificity means they can be used to work on weaknesses in your understanding.

Determining where your shortcomings are will lead to big improvements when the test day comes. The areas you are already strong in do not need as much attention so you can spend more time and effort brings your weaknesses up to par. These weak points will also help round out your understanding of the History subject. It is a comprehensive subject with ever increasing information.

If you’re up for going a bit old school, there are these things called books that still exist and are published every year. The College Board releases a World History Subject Test Study Guide annually in print and digital formats. This is the best guide possible as it made by the same company that designs the test. From this you can see many example questions and study the kinds of maps they will use. Preparation is key and with the right tools, you will reach the score you want.

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Seth