If your child is in the process of completing school, and is getting ready to apply for High School, then you will need to prepare him or her for the SSAT exam. Every year, millions of students appear for the SSAT. Some succeed, while some do moderately well, and a few don't make it at all.
What and why
SSAT stands for Secondary School Admission Test. To put it simply, scoring well in this exam gives your child the best chance of getting accepted at a private school. The SSAT test grades your child in 3 primary aspects:
Ideally, you want your child to score well on all three fronts, so that they can end up in the highest percentile and have a better chance of getting accepted at various private schools. While certain private schools have their own entrance tests for admission, most of them prefer to gauge the intelligence of your child through the SAT exam.
This is why you see so many parents are worried about their children preparing thoroughly for their exams every year. However, with proper learning tools and tutoring, you can ensure that your child scores very well in the SSAT exam.
For many people who read about this exam for the first time, the way things are scored is very confusing. However, here is the basic format of a SAT exam.
- There are questions based on a reading in the question paper
- Math questions are asked as multiple choices
- Topics for essays are provided and the candidate has to write as best as possible on the given topic
Here is how scores are calculated:
- Every correct answer gets one point added to the score
- Every wrong answer gets ¼ points deducted from the final score
- If a question is not attempted at all, no points are added to or subtracted
- Essays are sent directly to the schools' admission departments and don't have a score
How schools decide on admission
Student scores are scaled once the grading has been completed and sent to private schools that your child applies for. Instead of using the direct score, schools use the percentile system, in order to determine whether to accept your application or not.
This system compares the grads of your child with those that are achieved by all other applicants over the last 3 years. For instance, the highest scoring student gets into the 99th percentile, while the lowest scoring applicant goes into the 1st percentile. The higher your percentile figures, the greater will be your chances of getting into the best schools.
Conclusion: The SAT exams are probably the most important priority for your child right now. By ensuring that your children put in adequate hours (not too much) with SSAT prep, you make them more likely to create a better future for themselves. Fortunately, there are a number of services, websites and institutions that help students deal with the prep, and ensure that come exam day, they are well prepared.
By Raj Navinbhai Ballu