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What I’m about to say probably won’t make me popular with many high school math teachers, but here it is.
Indeed, the ancients—meaning Greek dudes walking around in togas—developed a glossary of terms to describe the way a speaker or writer aims to persuade his or her audience.
This is a fancy way of referring to the speaker/writer, the person trying to argue at point. For the SAT, the writer of the article is the rhetor; the audience is made up of those who originally read the work.
The second, by contrast, tugs at your heartstrings (the poor children!
) Were this written on a petition to save the school, you’d be far more likely to sign it than the first sentence, I’m guessing.
And here’s the kicker: you will not be asked whether you agree or disagree with the author’s point.
Instead, you are going to write an essay that discusses how the writer goes about trying to persuade his or her audience.This is not easy to do; I’m guessing, you’ve never written an essay exactly like this.Therefore, read some of the essay samples and the responses online to see exactly how one goes about discussing how a writer persuades his or her audience.And when you’re done, check out the Magoosh SAT study guide for even more tips and tricks for SAT writing and grammar. If you’re familiar with the “old” (pre-2016) format, no longer will you have to argue a point using contrived examples from either history or your personal life.Instead you are going to read a complex, opinion-driven essay.I know you’re probably thinking of the SAT essay as a necessary evil—an optional evil, no less.But much of what you’ll learn here isn’t a means to a quick end, but something that you will be using for the rest of your life.And it will never be their neighbor or that one lady they talked to on the bus.Writers will always quote leading authorities to give their claims greater authority.That’s not to say the SAT essay totally mirrors that kind of writing.But by improving your overall writing ability as you study for the SAT, you’ll be honing a skill that you’ll be using for years to come.