A tuneful route to success in SATs

February 23, 2007

A musician who produced a CD of songs to help US students prepare for their SAT exams wants to use his form of "edutainment" in other areas of learning.

Michael Moshan and David Mendelsohn wrote 13 catchy tunes based on vocabulary words that feature in the all-important SAT college admission exam. The Rock the SAT CD was released last June, and Mr Moshan said he had heard that it had helped students improve their performance.

He now wants to "branch out and use edutainment and music in all sorts of areas", he said. "Today's students with their multimedia mentality and their iPods are ready to embrace a different way to learn."

The pop-rock songs on the Rock the SAT CD include 240 words gleaned from practice tests, study guides and previous SAT exams with the help of a consulting university professor. The exam tests students' vocabulary and maths skills, asking them to pick correct definitions of a long list of words.

One of the CD's songs features the lines: "You act belligerent, savage and truculent. Why must you fight with me? Don't you know you're just a charlatan. You're not what you pretend to be. Where does that get you now? Vilified, abused, denounced by the crowd."

Mr Moshan said that young people brought up on television easily remembered lyrics of obscure advertising jingles and thousands of songs. So why not memorise vocabulary words in that way? he wondered.

He said that was given audiotapes as a study guide for his SATs, but he found them bland.

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