SAT and AP tests still running strong

SAT and AP tests still running strong

Siearra Papuga, Feature Editor

“You may now begin section two of the SAT testing.”

Complete silence.

If 10 + x is 5 more than 10,

The squeaking of lead being drawn across an answer booklet.

What is the value of 2x?

The ticking of the minute hand.

If a positive integer n is picked at random…

The tapping of a pencil.

If the function f is defined by f(x) = 3x + 4…

A cough.

“Put down your pencils, this section is now complete.”

This spring, millions of students across the country have sat down to take any number of various standardized tests.  Whether it’s the SAT or Advanced Placement, the stakes can be high.

In the most dramatic sense, SAT and AP testing can determine whether or not you get into the college of your choice.  It’s as if SAT and AP tests are a part of the personality you are trying to sell to each college, therefore creating tension, paranoia, and increasing nerves.

The primary fear of SAT testing is “not doing very well” to junior Laura Fanning.  “They’re a big deal.”

To others, the length of the test is what creates anxiety.  “I’m dreading the test because it’s so long,” says junior Phil Aniceto.

Aniceto plans on using, a free online SAT prep course, and attended the free in-school SAT prep classes.

“I want to get the minimum score acceptable for the choice of university,” says Aniceto.

The silver lining in SAT testing is the ability to take it as many times as you want.

“I’m not too nervous because I know if I don’t get a good score that I can just take it again,” says Aniceto.

On the other hand, you get one shot to do well on the AP exams.

Fanning is a nervous going into her AP History exam because “history isn’t [her] favorite subject.”  However, she is confident that she has a good chance at doing a good job due to her studying plans.

“I plan on using review sheets and my notes for the year [to study for the history exam]” says Fanning,  “I just hope I don’t get an essay topic that I know nothing about” says Aniceto, who is joining Laura for the history AP test.

But for some, SAT and AP tests are just another piece of paper to add their name to.

To junior Steve Talbot the only problem with SAT testing is the need to wake up so early.  “I’m good at test-taking and relaxed in those [kinds of] situations when others usually make a bigger deal [out of it],” he said.

Talbot also believes that the SAT show a students “intelligence and not just their worth ethic.  SAT gives people without a good work ethic a chance to show colleges something [else to demonstrate their intelligence].”

“It’s good to have a standardized test because it tests everyone on the same test level,” says Aniceto.

Standardized tests, however, might just be an annoying alarm clock.  “I just hate having to wake up so early,” says Talbot.

All students must arrive to their assigned test-taking building by 7:45 a.m. For students who are used to waking up late on a Saturday morning, SAT are not your best friend.

“I have to wake up early five days a week as it is” says Talbot, “so I like to sleep in on weekends, not wake up for SAT.”

As to why SAT or AP tests are stressful, the list can go on and on.  The point is, they’re necessary in order for many students to get a chance to impress their dream colleges.  Although the questions change every test, the test taking process won’t be changing any time soon.