ACT / SAT Pro Tip: Learn a New Word Every Day

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The higher your ACT / SAT scores, the better your chances of getting accepted into the college of your choice, and the more scholarships you can be eligible for. With that in mind, it’s never too early to start preparing for the ACT or SAT, right? Even as early as freshman year you can start working towards earning a high score.

A Word a Day

One thing that can help immensely is learning a new word every day. It won’t take you more than a couple of minutes every day to learn a new word but at the end of one year, you will have learned 365 new words! With 365 new words in your vocabulary, you are less likely to be confounded by the obscure vocabulary that these tests are notorious for.

More than Just a Definition

Just learning a new word is not going to help just by itself. You must take an extra minute to learn not just the meaning of the word but also how to use it in context. This is super important. If you are a visual learner, maybe create a doodle of the word or maybe its meaning. Use any tool that works best to help you retain new things that you learn.

Prefixes, Suffixes, and Root Words

Even if you have an impressive lexicon, the ACT or SAT might surprise you with a word you haven’t come across, or only have the vaguest understand of. If you don’t know the meaning of a word, there are ways to derive the meaning. The easiest way is by learning prefixes, suffixes, and root words.

For example, if you see the word malediction and it stumps you, break it down. You might know that mal generally means bad (malcontent, malicious, malfunction). And diction might sound familiar too, relating to speech or words. Put them together and you can suss out the general meaning of malediction: bad + word. Curse.

Word Resources

Short of carrying around a dictionary or thesaurus, there are some websites that can help you with learning a new word. Dictionary-Word of the Day or  Merriam Webster Word of the Day are both great resources. If apps are more your thing, you can find several apps that can help you learn a word a day. One such app is Apple’s Word of the Day.

ACT / SAT scores can affect acceptance odds. Check out yours for any college in the country with College Raptor’s free match tool!

College Raptor Staff

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