How to Prepare for the TACHS Test
The TACHS is intended to assess whether a student possesses the knowledge and skills necessary for the high school environment. It simply measures whether students are ready for the more difficult material they will encounter in high school.
What’s on the TACHS?
There are four different areas of the TACHS: reading, written expression, mathematics, and general reasoning.
The reading test measures reading comprehension. Students are given passages and asked questions about them. The text can take various forms, from literature to news reports, and the questions could revolve around the content, the main arguments, the word usage, or the author’s intent.
The written expression section assesses students’ writing abilities. Typically, students are presented with passages and asked to identify mistakes, such as grammar, word choice, sentence structure, or punctuation errors.
The mathematics portion tests wide-ranging mathematical abilities, from algebra, to geometry, to probability.
Finally, the general reasoning part examines students’ reasoning, logic, and abstract thinking. The questions on this part of the TACHS usually involve pattern recognition, spatial reasoning, or categorizing elements.
How is the TACHS laid out?
When you take standardized tests, it’s wise to familiarize yourself with the format of the test. The TACHS uses multiple-choice questions for all four sections and lasts for three hours, with breaks between each subtest. The actual test time when the breaks are subtracted is two hours.
Being aware of the test format should impact how you approach your TACHS prep. To ace a multiple-choice test, you don’t necessarily need to know the right answer, but you do need to know what isn’t the right answer. Eliminate answers you know to be wrong. If you still have no idea among the choices that remain, even if you just guess, at least you have a better chance now.
It’s also vital to pace yourself appropriately. Two hours is a long time, but there are a lot of questions on the TACHS. If you don’t know the answer to a question, skip it for now. Do all the easy ones first, and then cycle back and try your hand at the hard ones again. This ensures you have time to answer all the easy questions, and working through other questions could help you figure out ones you were struggling with. If you still have no idea how to answer some questions even after these tricks, just guess. There’s no penalty for wrong answers, and you could just get lucky.
Study for the TACHS
One of the most important aspects of TACHS prep is taking practice tests. You can access the TACHS student handbook online for free, which offers practice tests and sample questions to help you get used to the test. Practice the strategies outlined above so you can master them before the test rolls around.
There are plenty of ways to study for the TACHS on your own, including the handbook, practice tests, flashcards, study guides, and more. It’s important to start your TACHS prep early to ensure that you have enough time to internalize the material and study without pressure. The night before the TACHS, go to bed early and get a good night’s sleep.
There are no official TACHS preparation courses or books from the TACHS office itself, but across New York, you can find resources, courses, and tutoring services to help you pass this difficult test. The benefit of hiring tutoring services to help you prepare for the TACHS is that you receive the guidance of a professional tutor who can identify your weaknesses and craft lesson plans designed to target your individual needs. A TACHS tutor can also boost your confidence, which is essential since nerves are a major factor that can lead to underperformance on the TACHS.