Let’s face it: life is very much about organization and test preparation is no different. “Early to bed, early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy, and wise”. This ancient saying gets at the idea of a schedule, or a system, if you will. Being disciplined in one’s study is a sure sign of future success. We at A Plus Tutoring have seen up to 40-50 percentile increases in students scores when students put all the pieces together. Is it possible? Dramatic transformations in test scores are possible with a willing, hard working, and intelligent student. More importantly the study and organization skills are invaluable in life. Our test prep programs typically last about 24 hours, determined by a diagnostic test and a conference with the families we work with, but more or less is very possible as parents typically pay per hour (per session or per week). Below we break down the tests we help students prepare for.
Tests We Have One-to-One Preparation Programs For
PSAT prep®, started by many students their sophomore and junior years, is in a way a “practice” for the SAT®. Though the test takes significantly less time to administer and is not counted as an entrance requirement by colleges, there is still the possibility of achieving a score high enough to enter the National Merit Scholar Qualifying Tournament (NMSQT®), which is linked to prestige and college money. CollegeBoard® has a practice PSAT® here. Register if your school does not already do so. The normal date for PSAT® administration in Cincinnati is usually Wednesday or Saturday in the third week of October. PSATs count for NMSQT® a student’s junior year, but schools may administer them as early as 9th grade. PSAT/NMSQT®.
The SAT® :
SAT® prep is slightly more involved than PSAT® tutoring. In general, the SAT math is slightly more in depth (more material from Algebra 2) and the SAT also requires an essay, while the PSAT has no equivalent. The essay on the SAT is part of a student’s composite Writing score. This link here at CollegeBoard.com offers test date and registration info.
A full practice test is online, but it really makes sense to make the most of every test. Why take the test unless you are substantially prepared for it? The SAT® Question of the Day is also a great aid to get practice when sessions for the SAT® turn more test oriented than skill or step oriented.
SAT® Test Schedule (click to go to website)
ACT® Test Prep:
The ACT® can be compared to the SAT®, the latter being a test more centered on critical thinking and puzzles, if you will. The SAT’s emphasis on vocabulary is countered by the ACT’s emphasis on hard science and math (up to precalculus, though only up to Alegebra II on the SAT®. The ACT’s average time per question is about 50 seconds, versus about 75 seconds on the SAT, though both tests give a relatively short amount of time to deal with grammar components of each exam.
Both exams take almost four hours to complete and are usually taken during a student’s junior year, which is the busiest of the high school years. Almost all schools take the SAT or ACT score; in fact, a student can depend upon any of those schools taking the highest test score earned. In this way, students should not worry about low test scores being looked at by colleges. It is more important to have enough time to prepare for each test to get an accurate score : the goal after all, is to see if college is the right course for your son or daughter. As we know, many have found success in life through other means.
ACT® Test Schedule (click here to go to website)
SAT Subject Test Preparation (formerly SAT II®) and Advanced Placement (AP) tests
An exam like the SAT® or even the ACT® is not the only requirement for some colleges. Competitive universities often require up to two subject tests, administered by CollegeBoard®. The twenty subject exams, administered in six times a year, range from Math I (up to precalculus) to Chemistry to German. The first link above has both practice questions and content info about what are on these exams. The AP® (Advanced Placement) exams are described here and are also content oriented.
However, students must register for AP® courses through accredited institions to have a chance to take the tests. While SAT® subject tests are an important part of the resume building process and are required by some schools, it is the AP® exam scores that can earn students many hours of credit, reducing expenses and the need to take certain classes in their colleges. Taking an AP class can certainly be worthwhile, and the statistics prove it. We have several tutors specializing in subject preparation, whether it be the SAT subject tests or the AP® tests.
College Application Essay Assistance –
(Sessions arranged on an hourly basis or part of test prep)
Besides the SAT Writing and ACT English test sections, almost all students find themselves needing to write essays for schools they apply to. Cleverness rather than great writing ability can go very far in impressing essay reviewers. It is often a good idea, as part of a session, to brainstorm about how a certain topic can be approached. Mr DiSalvo, as a creative writing major in college can help give some advice.