When preparing to write an SAT essay, one of the first things you need to do is put out of your mind the notion that this is like any other essay you’ve ever written. In fact, it’s unlike any essay you’ll write again, too. Because of that fact, you need to approach it differently than you would a standard essay for midterms, let’s say.
To Write An SAT Essay, You Need…
Let go of the content. Yes, you should strive to write the best essay you possibly can but the content doesn’t matter all that much. This is because the essays are graded holistically. Showing you understand basic essay structure, how it works, and how to argue a point are all you really need to do.
Another thing you might not know that is related to the above is the fact that you can get facts totally wrong in your essay and it won’t matter one bit. So long as the examples you cite back up any claims you’re trying to make to prove your thesis, you’ll be fine. It’s all about context here. So, if you recall a date wrong about a fact but the example in this context supports your argument, you’ll get a high score.
Make sure you have a literary example or two in mind before you take the test. When you sit down to write an SAT essay, the prompt will be quite generic, so make sure you have a solid understanding of a few literary references you can use to answer the question.
Beyond showing you know how to develop a argument and support it, you also need to demonstrate good grammar, sentence structure, usage, and style. And it doesn’t hurt to throw in a few vocabulary words, too, to further impress the graders.