In his book Outliers, Malcolm Gladwell asks why some people succeed, living remarkably productive and impactful lives, while so many more never reach their potential. One of the main reasons, he finds, has to do with old-fashioned sweat equity, what Thomas Edison meant when he said, “Genius is one per cent inspiration, ninety-nine per cent perspiration.” In the chapter entitled “10,000 hours,” Gladwell discovers 10,00o is the magic number of hours that aspiring musicians typically hit en route to becoming world-class and world-famous artists. “The closer psychologists look at the careers of the gifted, the smaller the role innate talent seems to play and the bigger the role preparation seems to play.” Don’t worry, the magic number of hours is much more manageable for becoming a world-class standardized test taker; but rest assured, everyone has a magic number that virtually guarantees success!
It’s analogous to getting into great physical shape. I remember back in the day when you’d see an athlete all ripped up, six-pack abs–you know what I’m talking about–and think, wow, that dude probably spends half his life in the gym. Not necessarily so. Today, it’s pretty much common knowledge that a regular routine of diet and exercise yields great results.
For years at CollegePrepExpress, we’ve been promoting a regular routine of taking practice tests under simulated test conditions and studying the specific, finite bodies of material covered on the exam (for SATs that’s vocab, math, and grammar, for ACTs that’s math, grammar, and time management). Slow and steady wins the college entrance exam race. 25-30 min every night, six to seven nights a week, over a three to six months, and BAM, you’re going to the college of YOUR CHOICE.
Let us be your personal trainer and we’ll get you on a program of daily to-dos, including highly condensed materials for you to master as your scores take off for the stratosphere. Commit NOW to a regular routine of practice and study, practice and study, practice and study, and the entire application process gets a whole lot easier.