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SAT Math Guide

The SAT Math test is a very important test for college entrance and can cause students to feel very anxious/ nervous and less self assured. Therefore, I have included some top tips to aid students preparation/progress.

1) Never 'cram' for a test! If you don't know what you're doing, employ a tutor sooner rather than later!

2) Sleep well the night before the test. Don't study for hours!

3) Never guess an answer. If you don't know it or can't figure it out, skip it (move on to the next question) because you lose a quarter point for incorrect answers.
4) With some questions, if you don't know what method to use, you can often work out the answer (quickly) by substituting each of the possible answers into the given equation (sometimes you can eliminate one/two answers immediately).

Here are a few typical SAT math questions:
a) If c = b+ 1 and p=4b + 5, what is an expression for p in terms of c?

Answer: Take equation one and rearrange it making b the subject (b = c - 1), then substitute b into the second equation - p = 4(c-1) + 5, finally use the distributive property and combine like terms - p =4c -4 + 5 = 4c + 1.

b) If a bicycle wheel has traveled f/pi feet after n complete revolutions, what is the length of the diameter of the bicycle wheel?

Answer: We will need to use the circumference formula - c= pi x d.  The circumference is equal to 1 revolution, so 1 revolution = f/npi. Thus d = f/npi^2.

c) If the average of x, y and z is 12, what is the average of 3x, 3y and 3z?

Answer: The average is 3 x 12 = 36. Each number is being made 3 times larger, so the average is 3 times bigger too!

d) When a whole number N is divisible by 2, the remainder is 0. When N is divisible by 3, the remainder is 2. Which is a possible value of N? (a) 17, (b) 30, (c) 49, (d) 53 or (e) 74

Answer is (e). Here is some number theory for you mixed in with multiples! First of all, the number has to be even (divides into 2 exactly), so that rules out (a), (c) and (d).  It also can't be divisible by both 2 and 3. Since 30 is divisible by both, this value is ruled out.

(e) If 3x years from today Reyna will be (3y + 4) times her present age, what is Reyna's present age in terms of x and y?

Well, to answer this question we let her present age equal a variable, say r. We have two ways of representing her current age.
In 3x years, she will be r + 3x and also she will be (3y + 4) times her present age - r(3y +4). Thus we can set these two expressions equal to each other. r + 3x = r(3y + 4),

Then subtract r from both sides: 3x = r(3y + 4) - r.
Then factor out the r on right hand side: 3x = r(3y + 4 -1)
Simplify 3x/(3y + 3) = r
r = x/(y + 1)