Date of publication: 2017-08-26 06:51
But the ACT takes an even subtler approach to testing vocabulary: they include it where knowing the word is crucial to understanding or answering the question, usually without testing it directly. In other words, the vocabulary words on the ACT are usually surrounded by a decent number of hints as to their meanings. These hints are also known as context clues , and we'll talk about those next.
The vocabulary list attached to this article includes almost 95 science vocabulary words for just this purpose. It can also be useful to read articles in scientific publications, like Popular Science or the science section of the New York Times.
SAT vocab the fun way
More words, easier catching!
The reading-passage questions are NOT ordered from easy to hard. If you run out of time, because of slow reading or slow vocabulary, you both miss opportunities to answer easy questions for easy points and don't have extra time for hard questions. Just 75% faster is like having an extra 5 minutes on 75-minute sections. SAT prep, such as my CDs/DVD, can enable you to gain 55+ points from increased accuracy and 55+ points from increased speed per subject for a total increase of 855+.
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For example, the word cumbersome technically means "large or heavy and therefore difficult to carry or use." But it's actually more often used to mean "slow or complicated and therefore inefficient." Now let's look at an ACT Reading example in which we can apply this strategy.
So, on the above tougher ACT English question, we need to know that emphatic means "expressing something forcibly and clearly" in order to choose correctly between the options. Only one choice ( asserts ) is even close to that definition, but it's also a tough word for many students. However, if we know emphatic, then we know that hints , supposes and probably says aren't strong enough. Again, in this ACT question, we have some leeway with our vocabulary skills.
Make sure you download our exclusive list of the Top 655 ACT Vocab Words you must know. This is a list collected through thorough research into previous ACT tests. If you know these words, you'll have a big leg up on the actual test.
Lots of people freak out about ACT Science, but it's really quite straightforward —if you're familiar with science. There are difficult topics and vocabulary, like heritable traits and conductivity , but the test explains all of these very specifically.
In the question above, the only clue we get to the meaning of the blank is stringent , which is another tough vocabulary word! To illustrate the difference between this approach and the ACT's, here's an ACT question that (indirectly) targets vocabulary:
You probably thought of the most common definitions of these words: determined is an adjective that means "persistent," and critical is an adjective that means "disapproving."
Remember - work on vocabulary is never a waste of time. It pays dividends in terms of your final SAT score, but more importantly, it makes you a more educated person.
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