Kaplan Sci-Hi Admissions Test 2002: Your Complete Guide to the New York City Specialized Science High Schools Admissions Test


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Kaplan's SCI-HI provides a comprehensive review of the material on the New York City Specialized Science High Schools ...

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Higher Score Guaranteed!

Get the Score You Need. Get Into the School You Want.

Kaplan's SCI-HI provides a comprehensive review of the material on the New York City Specialized Science High Schools Admissions Test, two practice tests to sharpen your skills, plus Kaplan's highly effective test-taking strategies to help maximize your score.

Steps to SCI-HI Success

* Review
Follow the step-by-step review of all the content on the test.

* Strategize
Apply Kaplan's exclusive test-taking strategies.

* Practice, Practice, Practice...
Practice with realistic questions and get detailed explanations for every answer.

* Succeed
Get the Score that gets you in!

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780743214179
  • Publisher: Kaplan Publishing
  • Publication date: 9/4/2001
  • Pages: 336
  • Product dimensions: 8.37 (w) x 10.88 (h) x 1.37 (d)

First Chapter

Chapter 2: Inside SCI-HI

The SCI-HI test is a standardized test, which means that it is pretty predictable. Although the Board of Education is free to change the test (and they occasionally do), the test is unlikely to change dramatically. Therefore, you can take control and build your confidence by knowing what to expect. When you sit down to take the test, you should know what the test will look like, how it will be scored, and how long you'll have to complete it.


There are four types of questions on the SCI-HI test, three verbal and one math.

Verbal Section

On the verbal section, you'll see the following types of questions:

* Five Scrambled Paragraphs

Scrambled paragraphs require you to arrange six sentences into a logical paragraph. The idea is that these questions test your ability to identify the logical flow and sequence of ideas. The main thing they test is your ability to identify transitional words and phrases.

* 10 Logical Reasoning Questions

As the name suggests, Logical Reasoning questions present you with a situation or a set of facts and require you to reason logically based on the information you are given. The specific tasks include figuring out codes, identifying correct assumptions, determining the relative positions of people or things, or drawing valid conclusions.

* 30 Reading Questions

The Reading questions don't exactly test your ability to read. They test your ability to comprehend what you've read. You'll get five Reading passages on a variety of subjects, each of which will be followed by six questions. One question for each passage will test your understanding of the main idea. Other questions will ask you to identify details from the passage or to make inferences based on what you read.

The Verbal Section will appear first on the test and you will have approximately 75 minutes to complete the section.


In the Math section, you'll find:

* 50 questions covering a variety of math topics

Most math questions will be arithmetic, algebra, and geometry questions. However, you may also see problems dealing with simple probability and statistics. Additionally, you're likely to see questions that seem somewhat unfamiliar. The Board of Education believes that your ability to deal with novel situations is a good indicator of mathematical ability. However, most of the subject matter will be familiar. The 9th grade test will contain basic trigonometry.

The Math section will follow the Verbal section. You will have approximately 75 minutes to complete the section.


Scoring for the SCI-HI test is a little strange. It's not that the scoring is difficult to understand, it's just that individual scores matter only to the extent that they are above or below a cutoff line.

Here's how the scoring works. First, you get a "raw score" based on the number of questions you answer correctly. You get two points for every correct Scrambled Paragraph and one point for every other correct answer you mark on your answer grid. Since there are five Scrambled Paragraphs and ninety other questions on the test, the highest possible "raw score" is 100.

Next, your raw score is multiplied by a formula known only to the Board of Education to arrive at a scaled score. The Board of Education gives you a scaled score for each section and a composite score for the entire test. The highest possible composite score is 800.

Admission is based solely on your composite score. The way this works is that all of the students are ranked from high score to low score and then assigned to the school of their first preference until all the available seats are filled. For example, if Stuyvesant had exactly 500 spaces available and the top 500 scorers all picked Stuyvesant as their first choice, all 500 scorers would be admitted. If the 501st scorer listed Stuyvesant as her first choice and Bronx Science as her second choice, she would be assigned to Bronx Science. In other words, if 500 students were admitted to Stuyvesant and the 500th highest score was 560, then 560 would be the "cutoff" score for Stuyvesant. Therefore, scores are relative; it matters only whether they are above the cutoff, but there is no way of accurately knowing what the cutoff score will be. All you know is that it will likely be a little higher than last year's cutoff because the test becomes increasingly competitive every year.


When the test begins and you open to the first page, here's what you'll see:


Time — 75 Minutes
45 Questions

The most important thing to remember about SCI-HI timing suggestions is that they are just that — suggestions!

Here's the way it works. You'll have 150 minutes to complete the entire test. It is recommended that you spend approximately half the time (75 minutes or 1 hour and 15 minutes) on each section. However, if you finish the Verbal section early, you can move on to the Math section without waiting for the 75 minutes to end. Similarly, if you finish the Math section with time to spare, you can go back over both the Math and Verbal sections of the test.

What this means is that you have both the freedom to structure your time and the responsibility to use your time wisely. While you can spend more than 75 minutes working on the first section, it may not be wise to do so. However, the flexibility you have in skipping around and going back to one section after finishing the other gives you ample opportunity to play to your strengths.


You are responsible for setting your own pace on the test. This is a big responsibility which you should take very seriously. Here are some rough guidelines to follow.

Scrambled Paragraphs:
2-3 minutes each
Logical Reasoning: 1 1/2 minutes each
Reading: 2-3 minutes per passage
1-1 1/2 minutes per question

1 1/2 minutes per question.

Remember that these guidelines are rough. You will spend more time on some questions and less time on others. However, you must be aware of time if you want to maximize your score. If you're casual about it, you could get yourself into big trouble.


In addition to preparing for the test, you should be doing some research about the schools. Remember, if you get accepted into a school, you will be expected to attend. Therefore, you want to make an informed decision here.

The best way to get information about the schools is to contact them — or at least check out their Web sites. Here's the contact information for each school:

Stuyvesant High School
345 Chambers Street
New York, NY 10282
(212) 312-4800

Bronx High School of Science
75 West 205 Street
Bronx, NY 10468
(718) 817-7700

Brooklyn Technical High School
South Elliot Place at Dekalb Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11217
(718) 858-5150

Do some research. Talk to your parents, teachers, and guidance counselor. Some factors that you may want to consider are:

* Location
* Age and condition of facilities
* Class size
* School size
* Areas of concentration
* Advanced Placement courses
* Research programs
* Availability of hands-on tech courses
* College courses offered
* Extracurricular activities

Additionally, here are a few trivia facts about the schools that you may or may not know:

* Brooklyn Tech is one of the ten largest high schools in the country according to U.S. News and World Report.
* Stuyvesant was the first site recognized by the President's Commission on Excellence.
* Five Nobel Prize winners attended Bronx Science: Leon Cooper, 1972; Sheldon Glashow, 1979; Steven Weinberg, 1979; Melvin Schwartz, 1988; Russell A. Hulse, 1993.

Copyright © 2001 by Kaplan Inc.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 10, 2001


    Kaplan Sci-Hi does cover the materials that you'll see on the Specialized Science High School Admissions Test. But the following are the areas where not enough information was given: Scrambled Paragraphs(details were short on how to approach to connect the sentences together) Reading Comprehension(This part gives sufficient details on how to mark and circle clues which helps you to answer the question, but a little more information would have been better) Mathematics(Area where alot of information was given but again it doesn't go into depth in details, unfortunately for 9th graders , the book did not contain 9th grade math materials that were on the SSHSAT) a better book for math for 8th graders. Don't take me wrong there are good qualities. Such as the Stress guide and a complete guide of info on the test and admissions procedure for you students and parents.

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