If you have been reading this blog, none of these Miller Analogies Test secrets should come as a surprise. If you’re new to the blog, this is a great overview of some of the best tactics for MAT success.
Learn MAT question strategy
Your go-to question strategy is described in the “Best ways to figure out the relationships in MAT analogies.” When this strategy doesn’t work, move to one of the others described on page 12 and 13 of the official MAT study guide.
I want to stress that you have to be strict in practicing these. Strategy is not something reserved for the hard questions. Practice question strategy on every single question you do from the first to the last. That is the only way to have it ready on test day.
Low context over high context
The definition of a kilogram is straightforward and easy to memorize. In contrast, the definition of an artist–for MAT purposes–includes their name, time period, artistic movement, and famous works.
A kilogram is what I call a low context term. Artists are high context. Low context terms normally require 1-2 pieces of information for MAT purposes. High context terms require anything more than that.
Every question on the MAT counts for equal points. A question about the definition of “transgress” is worth the same as a question about Picasso’s favorite art subject. The difference is, it is way faster to memorize the definition of “transgress” than it is to memorize four or more pieces of information for Picasso.
Whenever possible, study low context terms over high context. You cover more ground for more reward.
Skip back and forth
The MAT allows you to return to skipped questions at the end of the exam. Further, every question counts for the same amount of points. This means you absolutely should save hard questions for the end. Skip anything you know that you can’t answer quickly, and return to it at the end.
How do you know you can’t answer it quickly?
By the time you have completed your studies, you need to have a clear understanding of your strengths and weaknesses. Are you great at vocab, or weak in history, or middling at math? If you know your strengths and weaknesses, you can separate subjects into three categories:
- (strongest) you always answer these as they come
- (middle) you always attempt it but skip for the end if it proves too challenging
- (weakest) always save for the end (skip immediately).
Doing this will help make sure you answer every question and get every point possible. Which brings up another tactic…
Guess when necessary
If you have already skipped the question once and you can’t answer it the second time around, guess. Eliminate as many obviously wrong answers as you can, and pick among whatever is left. There is no penalty for wrong answers on the MAT, so guessing is always a better option than leaving it blank.