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Direct Hits Toughest Vocabulary of the SAT: Volume 2 2011 Edition

4.8 out of 5 stars 35 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0981818467
ISBN-10: 0981818463
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 182 pages
  • Publisher: Direct Hits Publishing (August 16, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0981818463
  • ISBN-13: 978-0981818467
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.4 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,077,689 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By S. Park on February 23, 2011
Format: Paperback
The reviews seemed way too formulaic, so I clicked on "See all my reviews" for many of the supposed reviewers. Funny that many of them ONLY review volume 1 and 2 of this particular book (no other products) and the reviews are identical. I especially like the one with statistics - please don't believe these fake numbers. Update Feb. 23, 2012: I stand by my statement on the oddity of reviews by reviewers who only review these books and no other products and statistics are difficult to prove. A commenter provided a link but as of today it is a dead link. However, there are a few legitimate-looking and detailed reviews as well. Just be aware.

The truth is that for people who want to do the bare minimum to prepare, go ahead, buy this book. But it is sorely lacking for those who truly want to do well. The painful truth is that studying more like 700-1000 words, preferably in flashcard format with each word used in a descriptive sentence, is most effective. You set aside the flashcards of words you know, whittling them down until you take the test. If you don't conquer all of the words, it'll still be likely to be more than the 200 offered here.

Update Feb. 23, 2012: one commenter - who looks quite legitimate - states that many people don't have the time. Okay, noted. Also, there is a new version of these books out since last month at a very reasonable price - look up "Direct Hits vocabulary of the SAT 4th edition." If you do not know the words in the Look Inside portion, this is probably very helpful to you. I find these words very basic, but I realize that the average high schooler may certainly not think so!
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Format: Paperback
I used both of the 2010 Direct Hits Vocabulary books and I can safely say that no other SAT vocabulary list is even close to matching the quality of these books. First, the choice of words is impeccable. I was so pleasantly surprised when I started recognizing new words on my practice SAT tests - words that I remembered from these books. And, best of all, I actually remembered the meanings of these words.

Furthermore, these lists have only the most common words in the SAT. The beauty of Direct Hits is that it has fewer words that are all high-frequency. As a high school student, I simply didn't have the time to study the thousands of words given in other SAT vocabulary lists to prepare for the SAT. However, studying the words in Direct Hits was definitely manageable. Just as a warning though - the book actually has more than 400 words; while it has 400 definitions, it will often say "word X, word Y, and word Z all mean this definition" and count that as one word. However, this is an extremely minor issue.

The second-most lauded aspect of these books is its examples that draw from relatable bits of pop culture and history. I actually did not find these helpful - while they were quite interesting to read, I ended up creating my own examples because I've never watched most of the movies that they refer to in their examples.

However, the lack of examples that relate to me personally is a very small issue - after all, none of the other vocabulary lists has perfect examples suited for me exactly either. The real beauty of these books is their actual words, which is, after all, the most important aspect of any vocabulary list. I can't say this enough - the complete lack of useless filler words is astounding.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
You will need to read a bit to see how Direct Hits Vols. 1 & 2 fit into our project. I hope you will feel it is worth the effort after you have read the entire review.

I want to make it super clear to everyone that I have no association with the author and can assure S. Park from TX that I am in no way a fake reviewer. I actually use what I purchase with real students and am not unwilling to give a book a very low rating when it is deserved.

As far as studying 700 or more words to prepare or the SAT I did not count the words in Vols. 1 and 2 but there are a lot of words as the author does a great job of explaining how three words mean exactly the same thing, or very close to the same thing. The fact that the student enjoys studying the books when the many other options I presented did not catch the student's interest is enough for me. A book with a lot of words in it is not all that useful unless the student will study the book. These books simply work for my students and I will be buying more of them.

As for the 1 star review it must be that there was a problem at the factory as the two books have different words in them. if Phuong will contact Amazon and ask for a book that has not been misprinted by the publisher I expect Amazon will make it good.

Now on to the description of our project.

A low income student achieved the following raw and percentile scores on the PSAT when taken as a 9th grader in 2008:

Reading 48, 68%; Math 65, 96% and Writing Skills 55, 89%; selection index 168, 79%. Sophomore norms.

The student asked to be prepared to take the PSAT in October 2010 when the student would be a junior.

In preparing to tutor the student for the 2010 PSAT the following were purchased in June 2010.
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