Top 30 Examples to Use as SAT Essay Evidence was authored by Christian Heath, a 24-year-old Texan who scored a perfect 2400 on the SAT. It’s gratifying to see these young brainiacs go into test preparation, rather than long-range weapons design or food biotechnology.
Top 30 Examples is available for $9.95 at eSATPrepTips.com. As the title implies, it includes information on 30 topics that you can use as evidence for your SAT essay. There are examples from such diverse areas as adventurers, authors, athletes, literature, history, medicine, and others.
Typically, an example begins with a quote or two, followed by a summary paragraph, and about ten brief factual paragraphs. Sources are not cited.
For example, there is a section on Frank Lloyd Wright, “America’s Legendary Architect.” Wright’s personality flaws are mentioned along with his many accomplishments; the information can be used in either a complimentary or disparaging fashion.
The writing style is clear and concise; it is not meant to be fancy. As such, the manuscript probably won’t “blow anyone away” – it presents simple facts that are appropriate for its purpose.
There are two examples on personal experience (“Learning to play the piano” and “Travelling Abroad”), presumably about the author’s own experiences. There are also a few quick tips on how to write the essay at the end of the manuscript.
The manuscript does have several grammar/style errors that a proofreader could clean up.
Lisa, “a former SAT essay reader,” commented on Christian’s blog that SAT graders are not instructed to take off points for lack of truth, and goes on to recommend that students develop their own examples because “it’s good for the soul.” My thought is that, if you want to help your soul, you can always have some chicken soup. What you want on the SAT is a good grade, and researching examples will help you get that. And yes, it’s okay if you miss a fact or two, but you don’t want to present a mess of factual errors either. Graders are human, after all.
My overall impression of this work is that Mr. Heath has done the legwork, so you don’t have to. There are no secrets contained within, nor is this a creative work. Any intelligent student with a little gumption can find some worthy examples for the SAT essay by searching the Web, but most likely it will take several hours to do the job well. For around $10, you can have the finished product right now.