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About the SSAT

The SSAT (Secondary School Admission Test) is used by many independent schools all over the world for admission purposes. By assessing verbal, reading, writing and mathematical skills, the SSAT is able to supply valuable information to independent schools. Proper preparation can significantly increase your child’s overall score, and the number of independent schools he or she can apply for.

SSAT Questions by Test Sections

  1. The SSAT Quantitative test section consists of questions that measure a student's ability to solve problems involving quantitative concepts.
  2. The SSAT Verbal test section is made up of synonyms and analogies and is used to assess verbal reasoning and understanding of language.
  3. The SSAT Reading Comprehension test section requires students to read passages and then answer relevant questions.
  4. The SSAT Writing test section presents students with a prompt (a picture prompt for elementary level), in response to which they must write an essay.

SSAT Quantitative

The mathematical concepts assessed in the SSAT Quantitative section vary among the different levels. Students in grades 3 and 4 (Elementary Level) are tested on a variety of skills based on each level’s respective grade. The SSAT Middle and Upper Levels assess the student’s knowledge of algebra and geometry, as well as other mathematical processes.

It is important when studying for the SSAT to review the necessary formulas for perimeter and area, as well as knowing how to recognize geometric shapes and know their properties (sum of inner angles, relation between height and length of sides, etc). In addition to this, it is crucial to know how to operate with decimals, or how to add, subtract, multiply, and divide between fractions (even in the cases where the denominator is not the same). It is also important to know how to interpret information that is presented in different ways (for example, a table, bar graph, pie chart, etc.).

SSAT Verbal

The SSAT Verbal section is divided into two parts: vocabulary (synonyms) and analogies. Students’ knowledge of the correct use of vocabulary, as well as their abilities to infer answers from texts are evaluated.

Developing this skill takes practice. Try going through the vocabulary that you learn in class and the different grammar rules that were taught in school. This includes rules for capitalization, punctuation, recognizing correct pluralization for certain nouns. If you know and understand the definitions of the words you have learned in school, you should have no problem recognizing synonyms and solving analogies. However, the latter may be more challenging without prior practice.

SSAT Reading Comprehension

The SSAT Reading Comprehension section assesses the ability of a student to understand what s/he has read. Each passage is followed by questions regarding the passage’s content, style, point of view, etc. The passages in the Reading Comprehension section of the SSAT utilize both narrative content as well as argumentative content.

With enough practice, you will understand precisely which sentence are more important and denote a key aspect of the text, the author, an opinion taken, or a general tone exposed. It is important to know approximately where every piece of information in the text lies in order to find the answers to questions faster. Improving your reading comprehension can also lead to a better performance the day of the test (in terms of the time it takes to answer the questions) and even improve your ability to recognize shallow content from important information.

SSAT Writing

The SSAT Writing section provides students with the opportunity to express themselves. Though this section is not graded, it is highly recommended to be accurately prepared, as it is a way to both stand out, and demonstrate writing abilities.

It is sometimes very useful to create a small sketch on the side with the structure of a generic essay. Once you learn the structure, you can look at the topic of the essay and start tentatively creating it. The first paragraph will be dedicated to introduction, and you can prepare standard sentences that you think could be always used. The final paragraph is always a conclusion. The body of the essay is mostly used to determine an idea, express either pros or cons, or reasons to support a claim. 

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SSAT Practice Test Online

Start preparing your child for the SSAT today! TestPrep-Online offers user-friendly SSAT practice tests and study guides for Upper Level, and will soon release practice packs for Middle and Elementary Levels, as well. All our practice and preparation packs are specifically designed to be both accurate to the testing material, as well as accessible to the user. Once purchased, your child can start practicing with our material from any WIFI device s/he wishes. 

The SSAT and other trademarks are the property of their respective trademark holders. None of the trademark holders are affiliated with TestPrep-Online or this website.

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