SAT: Math – Tips for the Student-Produced Response!
To tackle the SAT Math Student-Produced Response (SPR) section with less trepidation, you need to be familiar with the response format of gridding in your answers and choosing the most time-efficient approach to solving the problems. Spoiler alert: The following content reveals helpful hints and tips on how to hone your problem-solving skills for SPR questions and score well in this Math section.
Some key approaches that will help:
- Understand how the answer grid works so you don’t make a mistake in entering your response: only an answer entered properly as a decimal or fraction on the grid will be scored. Write mixed numbers as improper fractions.
- Don’t grid zeros before the decimal point.
- Grid zero by entering 0 in a single column (any column where 0 appears).
- Take each question one step at a time and identify what you need to know in order to answer the question. Since there are no possible multiple-choice answers to plug in or try, work out the steps carefully and double check that you actually answer the question that has been asked. For example, if you’re asked to give one possible answer, grid any of the correct answers and get full credit.
- For repeating numbers, grid as much as of a repeating decimal as will fit in the grid.
- You can use your calculator to help speed up getting an answer. Make sure you jot down your calculations so you can track your working steps. Note: most of the questions can be solved without using a calculator.
- Write down the relevant facts on figures and details as you pick up more information in the question. When solving equations, algebraic systems and inequalities, make sure you know whether you’re dealing with positive or negative integers, observe the ‘equal’, ‘greater than’ or ‘less than’ sign, and then take the necessary steps to solve for a preliminary variable so you can use the information to solve for the final one that is asked for.
Keeping in mind the above pointers should help fine tune your problem-solving skills for the SAT Student-Produced Response section and give you the confidence you need to approach these questions with success.