Test Prep - SAT Chemistry
Date: Sat 1/19, Mon 1/21, Wed 1/23, Thu 1/24
Time Tutored: 9:45 pm - 11:15 pm
Additional Billable Time: N/A
Previous Quiz/Test Scores: N/A
Next Scheduled Session: N/A
Our fourth session started 15 minutes later than we had planned, but we had a very good session nonetheless. As per S’s request, the focus of the last three sessions was on addressing as much of the unfamiliar vocabulary as possible by going over problems on the practice tests that he was unsure how to approach. I noticed that many of the questions that he had during this session were about electrochemistry and voltaic cells so after spending roughly half of the session answering individual questions we focused our attention on this. We went over anodes, cathodes, and the construction of a voltaic cell. I explained oxidation and reduction potentials in terms of the affinity for losing and gaining electrons. At the end of the session we talked briefly about energy levels and the hybridization theory ofchemical bonding, including how it relates to chemical structure.
Before the 5th session, S took a few more practice tests. His Chemistry scores were in the 720-750 range and his highest score in Math was a perfect 800. We went through the questions that he missed on the two Chemistry practice tests and by the end of the session, he understood all of the mistakes that he had made. This time, much of our discussion was centered on orbital hybridization as this is a topic that includes a lot of technical vocabulary and is one that he had not studied before in the way that it is presented on the SAT II Chemistry test.
In between the 5th and 6th sessions S took more practice tests and brought his chemistry score up to a 780. At this point we decided that S would benefit most by solely asking questions about the practice problems that he did not understand. After about 1 hour we had gone over every problem that he had gotten incorrect and decided to end the session and schedule a short, 7th session the next day so that he would have time to do more practice problems and come to me with any final questions he had before he takes the tests in Singapore this weekend.
I enjoyed working with S very much. He is a very talented student and I was impressed with his work ethic over the last couple of weeks. My final recommendation for him is to memorize which hybridizations (sp2, sp3, etc…) correspond to which bond angles including their resulting molecular shapes (bent, tetrahedral, etc…).
I believe that S has the ability to do exceptionally well on both tests this weekend. Going forward, I wish him the best of luck on the entire college application process.
S, feel free to contact me with any questions you may have about the University of Chicago. I would be happy to help.
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