I got a 1650 on my SAT, and I was expecting to get at least an 1800. I did a fair amount of prep work before the test on my own and with Princeton Review books. Where am I going wrong? How can I make sure I reach my goal next time?
There are a couple of possibilities as to why your scores are lower than you expected. If you have problems with test anxiety, you might have rushed through the questions or struggled with finishing on time. These are problems that respond best to practice testing under realistic conditions (timed, paper and pencil test).
If you were practicing with materials from Princeton Review, your scores might be lower because the questions from the prep company were less difficult than real SAT questions. This is a danger when you get review books that don't come directly from the College Board. I'd recommend that you check out the SAT Blue Book, which has a bunch of official practice questions. Taking official practice tests is the only way to predict your score with a high degree of reliability.