Best Way to Study for SAT Vocabulary

Direct Hits is the most recommended vocabulary list, but Spark Notes offers a decent free list. Studying for SAT vocabulary in multiple ways increases your retention of the definitions. Try these SAT vocabulary study methods as you work through the flash cards:

1. Write out the words and their definitions.
There is a reason that your teachers have made you define hundreds of vocabulary words throughout your academic career. Transferring words and their definitions to paper helps transfer the information into your long-term memory.

2. Write new sentences for each word.
Similarly, using a word in context helps cement its meaning. Create a new sentence using each word that you are trying to master. Or, even better, write a short story that includes 20 or 30 vocabulary words in context.

3. Draw a picture representing the word.
Pictures create connections to the definitions. Sketch a scene that helps you remember a word. For example, for the word "inundate," draw a dam breaking and the ensuing flood. This will help you remember the word should you encounter it on the SAT.

4. Read the word aloud and say it in a sentence.
Some students learn best by hearing information rather than by seeing it. You can even recruit a parent or friend to read the word and definition to you. If you find this learning style suits you, consider recording the definitions for later playback.

5. Type the words and definitions.
Type all the words into a word processing document or spreadsheet. Then try to define them without looking at the definitions. You can also sort them by alphabetical order.

6. Analyze the roots, prefixes, and suffixes.
Can you find words that have the same suffix? If so, do they mean the same thing in both words? For example, consider the word "cacophony." The root of the word is “phon,” as in symphony, telephone, and phonics. Underline this portion of the word so that you remember that word involves “sound.” Learning to associate words with related words can help you solve even the toughest test questions.

7. Group words by meaning.
Many SAT words have similar definitions. For example, pedantic, pedagogical, and didactic all have similar meanings. Grouping them will help you associate “educational” with all of the words in the group. You can also write each group on paper with it’s shared definition.

8. Have someone quiz you.

These are the best way to study for SAT vocabulary. Hope this helps study for SAT vocabulary. This is how one can improve SAT vocabulary skills.


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