The first step to achieving a high score on the SAT is understanding how the test is broken down into sections. Most students studying for the exam know that math is one of the largest sections of the SAT, but did you know that the math portion itself is separated into multiple subsections?
The largest portion of the SAT math section is the portion that tests your knowledge of the heart of algebra. This section alone accounts for roughly 33% of the entire test.
What Is the Heart of Algebra?
The heart of algebra is made up of multiple concepts taught throughout the different levels of algebra. Most students take pre-algebra, algebra I, and algebra II, which introduce these ideas in more depth as they progress through school. Learn more about some of the core concepts of the heart of algebra.
Linear Equations and Graphing
The linear equations on the SAT include a variety of simple to complex algebraic equations. Generally, this will involve solving for x or any other variable when given sufficient information to do so.
Some linear equation questions on the SAT will require you to graph the equation once you’ve solved for the variables. Additionally, some of these types of questions will also present you with a situation to analyze and write an algebraic equation to summarize.
System of Equations
System of equations SAT questions take the basic concept of linear equations and add more steps to solve more complex problems. Some of these questions will simply be made up of multiple linear equations in a single problem, but some will require you to write up an entire system of equations based on a given situation.
Absolute value questions are fewer and farther between on the SAT than other heart of algebra problems, but there will usually be at least one.
You’ll have to understand how to find the absolute value of a variable on a number line. Additionally, you’ll have to be able to recognize absolute value questions by the bracket lines put on either side of the equation.
Systems of Inequalities and Linear Inequalities
Systems of inequalities and linear inequality problems are set up in a similar way to linear equations, but the inequality symbol in place of an equal sign makes the system of processing these problems more complex.
These types of questions are usually found at the end of the SAT in multiple-choice format. This means that when in doubt, you can plug in the various multiple-choice options to more effectively solve for the variables.
No matter how you solve these problems, take your time so you don’t miss any of the necessary steps.
Jantzi Test Prep: Take on the SAT With Confidence
At Jantzi, we work closely with each student to create confidence and readiness going into the SAT so the high-level scores they’re looking for are within reach. Are you planning to take the SAT this year? Set yourself up for optimal success with Jantzi’s SAT tutoring or classes. Contact us today.