Student reading at desk.

Boost Your SAT Score by 20%: Ace School and Exam Prep With 6 Tips From Top-Scorer Emma

May 7, 2024

Striking the right balance between excelling in school and preparing for the SAT can be a challenging feat. Continue reading to explore effective strategies to ace both fronts. Delve into crafting an efficient study schedule, managing your time wisely, and sharing tips to maintain your sanity while juggling schoolwork and SAT preparation. Let's dive in!

1. Make a schedule and keep it updated

Crafting a weekly schedule is an essential step in organizing your time effectively and ensuring that you have enough time for both school assignments and SAT prep. When creating your schedule, you should allocate enough time for each activity, taking into account the amount of work required for school assignments and the time needed for effective SAT prep. Make sure to stick to your schedule and adjust it as needed. This will not only help you stay on track, but it will also prevent last-minute cramming. Additionally, creating a schedule can help you identify areas where you may need additional support, such as in certain subjects or test-taking strategies. By allocating specific time to these areas, you can work to improve your skills and knowledge in a more structured and effective manner. Overall, creating a weekly schedule is an important step in achieving your academic goals and maximizing your potential.

🚀 Example
If you have a busy week with multiple assignments due, you might allocate more time for schoolwork and less time for SAT prep. On the other hand, if you have a lighter workload, you might allocate more time for SAT prep. By creating a flexible schedule that takes into account your workload and priorities, you can ensure that you are making progress in both areas without neglecting either one.

2. Look ahead of your teacher’s plans

To ensure academic success, it is important to not only complete school assignments on time, but also align your personal study schedule with them. This will help you stay on track and avoid feeling overwhelmed. In order to achieve this, you can utilize various methods such as creating a study plan, keeping track of due dates using a planner or your teacher's plan book, breaking down larger assignments into smaller tasks, and setting achievable goals for yourself. By doing so, you will be able to manage your workload more effectively and improve your overall academic performance.

For example, if you have a history essay due in two weeks, you can create a schedule that breaks down the work into smaller tasks. In the first week, you can spend time researching and outlining the essay, and in the second week, you can focus on writing and editing. By aligning your study schedule with your school assignments, you can ensure that you have enough time to prepare for the SAT without neglecting your schoolwork.

3. Do schoolwork over the weekends

It is highly recommended that students allocate a significant portion of their weekends to schoolwork. Not only does this help to ensure that assignments are completed on time, but it can also alleviate some of the weekday workload, freeing up more time for focused preparation for the SAT. In addition to completing assignments, students can also utilize their weekends to review past material, conduct research, or work on long-term projects. This can help to deepen their understanding of the subject matter and strengthen their overall academic performance. By dedicating time to schoolwork on the weekends, students can achieve a better balance between their academic and personal lives, while also setting themselves up for success in the future.

For example, a student could spend Saturday mornings completing any homework assignments that are due on Monday, and then spend the rest of the day reviewing notes and practicing problems for the SAT. On Sunday, the student could work on any long-term projects or research assignments for school, and then dedicate the rest of the day to further SAT preparation, such as taking a practice test or reviewing difficult concepts. By utilizing the weekends in this way, the student can ensure that they are staying on top of their schoolwork while also making progress in their SAT preparation.

4. Combine schoolwork and activities

One way to make the most of your academic and extracurricular pursuits is to find opportunities for cross-pollination. For instance, if you're working on a history project, consider how you might connect it to a potential SAT essay topic. By doing so, you not only deepen your understanding of both subjects, but you also increase the chances of retaining the information for longer periods of time. Additionally, this approach allows you to make the most of your limited time and energy, as you are able to tackle multiple assignments and activities with a single effort.

For example, if you are studying the American Revolution in history class and have an upcoming SAT essay, you could consider how the causes of the American Revolution might relate to a potential SAT essay topic on the relationship between taxation and representation. By making connections between your schoolwork and SAT preparation, you not only deepen your understanding of both subjects, but you also make the most of your limited time and energy.

5. Be healthy

To excel in both school and SAT preparation, it is important to prioritize your health by getting adequate sleep, maintaining a balanced diet, and engaging in physical activity. By doing so, you can improve your overall well-being and increase your efficiency and productivity in both academic and test-taking endeavors. Research has shown that a healthy body and mind are more efficient for both school and SAT prep. Therefore, it is crucial to make time for self-care activities such as getting enough sleep, eating a balanced diet, and engaging in physical activity. By incorporating these practices into your daily routine, you can ensure that you are in the best possible shape to tackle both schoolwork and SAT preparation.

An example of prioritizing health while preparing for the SAT could be to allocate time each day for a physical activity, such as going for a run or practicing yoga. Setting a consistent sleep schedule to ensure adequate rest can also help improve overall well-being and academic performance. By prioritizing these self-care activities, students can approach both schoolwork and SAT preparation with a clear and focused mind.

6. Know your limits

It is important to take the time to evaluate all of your current commitments and activities. This could include anything from work duties to personal obligations. By doing so, you can better understand how these activities are impacting your overall well-being. It is perfectly normal to reassess your priorities and make adjustments to your schedule when necessary. By doing this, you can help prevent yourself from experiencing burnout, which can negatively impact all areas of your life. Remember, it's okay to say no to certain commitments or delegate tasks to others to ensure that you are taking care of yourself both physically and mentally.

Let's say you are part of the school basketball team, play the piano, and volunteer at a local animal shelter. You also have to keep up with your schoolwork and SAT preparation. You realize that you are feeling overwhelmed and struggling to keep up with everything. After evaluating your commitments, you decide to cut back on volunteering at the animal shelter to focus more on your schoolwork and basketball practice. You also delegate some piano practice sessions to your younger sibling who is also learning to play the piano. By making these adjustments, you are able to achieve a better balance between your academic and personal lives, and feel less stressed and overwhelmed.


1. How to create a study schedule for the SAT

Balancing schoolwork and SAT prep requires careful planning. Start by identifying your weaker areas on the SAT. Take a practice SAT exam to evaluate your performance. Review your practice tests to pinpoint where you've improved or faced difficulties. Focus on your weaker points by using various study methods. Don't neglect your stronger areas either; continuous improvement is key.

2. How many hours should you study a week for the SAT?

Creating a study schedule depends on your commitments. Aim to dedicate at least 8-10 hours a week for SAT prep. Divide your time between reviewing practice tests, studying weaker areas, and reinforcing stronger ones. Incorporate short study sessions during breaks to maintain consistency.

3. What are two ways you can prepare for the SAT?

To effectively improve your performance in exams, it is important to regularly review and practice past tests. This will allow you to identify your weaker areas and focus on them, thus improving your overall performance. However, it is also important to ensure that you maintain your schoolwork routine, as neglecting it can lead to poor academic performance. In addition to reviewing practice tests, you can also seek help from teachers, mentors or tutors who can provide guidance and support in areas where you struggle. Developing good study habits and time management skills can also help you achieve better results in exams and other academic pursuits.


Balancing schoolwork and SAT preparation is indeed a challenge, but with strategic planning and mindful execution, it's absolutely attainable. Remember, smart preparation is key. To further enhance your learning experience and boost your scores, consider signing up for Aha's AI-powered learning platform. It's a comprehensive resource with quality sample questions and personalized feedback. Start learning smart, not hard, and excel in both your schoolwork and SAT endeavors!

Relevant links

Download or Export icon
Download or Export icon
Download or Export icon
Download or Export icon
Download or Export icon
Download or Export icon
Download or Export icon
Download or Export icon

Related Blogs