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What you need to know about the SAT essay

Like other SAT sections, the SAT essay is standardized and systemized in both format and grading. If you know all the basic rules and understand what graders’ expectations are, you will find SAT essay not that scary at all.
By GPA Admin

What you need to know about the SAT essay

First of all, you should be familiar with the SAT essay’s format. The essay prompt consists of a quotation and questions asking you to take a stand on the issue. You will have to write a persuasive essay to demonstrate your point of view. You have only 2 pages to write on, and anything written out of provide space will not be graded. There are two graders, each assigns a score of 0-6, which makes your total score of somewhere between 0-12. The essay score is worth about 150 to 600 earnable points in the whole SAT writing section. Make sure that you write with a pencil. If you write in pen, you will automatically receive a 0.

A direct and clear answer is what graders expect in your essay is. An essay should have a strong structure such as the 4 or 5 paragraph style, with each paragraph consisting of a topic sentence and an example supporting that thesis. Give specific examples, general reasoning will not impress graders. You can take examples from anywhere: literature, history, actual events or even making it up. Do not forget to write in correct grammar and spelling, as well as use varied sentence structure. 

To be able to write a strong and persuasive essay in just 25 minutes, you need strategies. First, prepare a list of about 10 examples taken from literature, history, events or any other place, then think about how you can use them for different essay prompts. When you get to write the actual SAT essay, just take 2-3 examples from your prepared list, and that is super time-saver. Second, spend a few minutes writing down a “frame” for your essay: determine what your thesis is, what examples to use, how you will organize those examples. Third, make sure that every topic sentence and discussion in each paragraph refer to your thesis. Finally, spend the last minutes to proofread your essay: look for any grammar or spelling errors, replace repeated/unimpressive words with better ones.

You can only apply those above strategies after practicing a lot. The more you practice, the easier the SAT essay will become. 


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