think ahead to relieve ACT or SAT test-taking stress

Posted : August 6, 2008
Last Updated : December 16, 2014

think ahead to relieve ACT or SAT test-taking stress

When you head off to take the ACT or SAT, don't let forgetfulness or inattention surprise you with something unexpected and affect your test-taking abilities. Here are some true stories of unexpected events:

  • One student bought a new calculator the night before the test. He didn't use it before entering the test room, only to find out it didn't work when he sat down to take the test.
  • One student didn't look at her test admission ticket until the day before the test, only to find out that she wasn't taking the test at her school but an hour away. She had to rethink how her test day would go and factor in time to drive to the test.
  • One student didn't look to see what type of calculator was allowed during testing. She came to the test with a banned calculator and had to take the test without one.
  • One student arrived at the test center without a photo ID card. He had to run home before the test started to get his driver's license.
  • One student left the lights on in a borrowed car he drove to the test. He worried throughout the test and found a dead battery when the test was over.
  • One student didn't factor in enough travel time to accommodate for traffic. She didn't have time to stop for breakfast, so she did not have the proper fuel to help her focus on the test.

Obviously, unexpected events happen in our lives over which we have no control. However, if you can take a few steps to prepare for test day, you'll be comfortable knowing you're prepared and may even avoid an unwelcome surprise or two. Read your testing information from ACT or SAT early. Be sure to pack a bag filled with essentials (admission ticket, photo identification, no. 2 pencils, soft erasers, permitted calculator, etc.) the night before test day so you are not rushing around the morning of the test trying to find all of your needed items. Visit or to get familiar with test day procedures and what items are allowed in the testing room.

Source: ACT's News You Can Use

Kaplan Test Prep and Admissions (

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think ahead to relieve ACT or SAT test-taking stress

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