This guest post was written by David Recine from Magoosh


Getting ready for college is a stressful time in a teen’s life. SAT and ACT prep can be especially intense. Fortunately, there are ways that parents can ease test anxiety and give their teens the support they need for exam success.

Stay calm and keep things in perspective

Your child will be anxious about his or her test scores. So will you. You care about their future as much as they do, and you may know more than they do about their upcoming challenges. But test anxiety is contagious. Keep your worries in check. If you can face test prep setbacks calmly, your teen will have the confidence to keep trying.

No gossip or bragging

When your child is making great progress in their test prep, it’s easy to run out and tell everyone. But you know what’s hard? Preparing for the SAT or ACT in front of an audience. Mastering test skills is stressful enough with just you watching your teen. Keep your child’s test prep between you and them. That way, your teen will focus on their own performance, not on what other people think of their performance.

Start Early and Plan in Advance

Talk to your child about the importance of SAT and ACT scores early on, in their first or second year of high school. Encourage them to get started with test prep by the beginning of their junior year at the latest. Help your teen set an early test date so that he or she has time for a retake if necessary.