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When should you take the SAT or ACT?

Students take the PSAT starting their freshman and sophomore years. (These scores are used for National Merit Scholarship Program consideration as well as tracking by states' departments of education and colleges). Strategies for reading and writing can be learned and applied at this point, but most students will not have gained all of the prior knowledge needed for the SAT and ACT. Juniors should take their first SAT and/or ACT after winter break and any retakes that offer complete test reports (ACT's TIR and SAT's QAS) and do not conflict with other major events (final exams, other standardized tests, prom, etc). Ideally, students should aim to achieve their best scores by the June tests to allow time for visiting colleges and starting applications during the summer. If needed, students can still take the first tests offered during the fall of their senior year in time to meet most early action and early decision deadlines.

When should you start preparing?

 At least 6-8 weeks before the test.

What makes my program different?

  • My personalized, prescriptive prep programs are based on past performance, goals, strengths and weaknesses.

  • I work directly with each client for all aspects of test prep. I communicate with parents and students without any middlemen or subcontractors.

  • I provide a free, in-depth consultation based on an evaluation of former tests reports. I use an extensive questionnaire to gather background information so that we don't need to spend time on introductions or figuring out an appropriate protocol for working together. Instead, we can immediately dive right into a productive session.

  • I provide all materials (original manual, official practice tests, timer watch) except for calculator.

  • We start off with strategy sessions after quickly reviewing test content and format. Next, I demonstrate how and why test material is chosen, questions are made, and answer choices are constructed.

  • I model strategies, multiple approaches and memory hooks, making sure the student knows how to apply them and is ready to do independent practice and error analysis. I demonstrate easy to high difficulty-level problems.

  • We have focused feedback sessions based on specific questions and personal needs. We look for patterns in mistakes or weaknesses in prior knowledge, address issues, and tweak test-taking techniques.

  • My program is 100% individualized and a higher level of expertise than any other program available.

  • My clients are often either hardworking ambitious students with high goals, or they are not confident or committed but become much more motivated after working with me and realizing their potential to be successful.

  • I expect my clients to do their practice work before meeting with me so that we can hone in on issues.

  • There are many programs and tutors who basically babysit while students practice silently for the majority of time during each session, and then spend the rest of the time going over the answer key or giving a pre-set lecture. On the other hand, some students do need monitoring to be accountable and can benefit from the enforced practice.


What are my qualifications?

  • I am the only professionally-certified teacher (Math 6-12 and Integrated Middle School Curriculum in 13 states) in the country who has earned multiple perfect scores on the SAT and ACT and top1% on GRE and GMAT. 

  • I have also consulted for test publishers and have written and edited standardized test questions.

  • I have had outstanding success with diverse demographics and a wide range of abilities and academic goals. 

  • I am equally strong in math, science, reading and writing. As a result, I was able to create a consistent system of strategies and set of mnemonics that make it easier to learn, remember and apply the same test-taking techniques to both the SAT and ACT. My Test-Breaker Manual is the only test-prep book that applies to both tests.

  • I tailor my teaching style to left/right-brained learners (as evidenced by hand dominance), international/ESOL students, and athletes. I clearly translate standardized test lingo into simple, straightforward language. I use sports metaphors to clearly illustrate concepts and help athletes apply their competitive edge to beat tests.

  • I specialize in mind-body techniques for overcoming anxiety and attention issues.

  • I designed the curricula, created the materials and taught two popular courses (Test Prep & Success Class) based on state benchmarks for College Readiness, Career Research, and Critical Thinking & Decision-Making Skills.

  • I provide comprehensive college preparation:  admissions/placement tests, school and major matching, applications, essays, interviews, resumes, study skills, note-taking, organization, time management and stress reduction.


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