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However, don’t use time alone as the deciding factor here. The ACT and SAT Essay prompts are noticeably different in nature and really force your brain to work in different ways, within a limited time frame.Going to the ACT first, here is what the official ACT website says about the prompt you will face: “ The test consists of one writing prompt that will describe a complex issue and present three different perspectives on that issue…You are asked to read the prompt and write an essay in which you develop your own perspective on the issue.Let’s take a look at the differences between the ACT vs SAT Essay and why it’s still good to do it even if you don’t want to try.
At Prep Expert, we help students everyday prepare for the challenges both of these different essay formats present on test day.
We are often asked, “why should I prepare for the essay?
Your essay should analyze the relationship between your perspective and one or more other perspectives.
You may adopt a perspective from the prompt, partially or fully, or you may generate your own.” In short, the ACT demands that you not only have the analytical ability but also are comfortable with formulating your own argument.
That work includes: On top of those steps, you’ll have to consider the demands of the prompts themselves, which are quite different on both tests (we’ll get to that in a minute).
If you’re a person that in general needs more time when writing to ponder, then the SAT offers a slight advantage.Both essays require the ability to both recognize and employ logic, however, the usage of that logic moves in opposite directions.Each essay provides significant challenges regarding mental complexity that have to be addressed within a short time frame.There’s an immediate difference of 10 minutes that you need to notice.Ten minutes may not sound like much, but remember that both tests are rigorously timed and require you to do all of the necessary work within each section’s limits.On paper, the SAT essay would appear to demand more, since you are essentially acting as a detective on another’s person’s work.The constant digging and citations that you need to provide to prove your understanding can be taxing.As part of your explanation of the author’s methodology, you are tasked with citing evidence from the text itself to back up the argument you present.Think of the SAT’s essay as simply giving a long explanation of how and why the author’s argument works.On the essay itself, you are provided a prompt that is a long reading passage from an author that presents a particular argument.You are then asked to explain how the author builds that argument, in order to persuade his or her reader to accept it.