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SAT

Customized, 1:1 SAT tutoring will help your child gain admission to their top-choice schools, earn scholarships, and increase their overall confidence.

Our one-to-one tutoring is comprehensive and customized, focused on test-taking strategies, academic skills, pacing, and overcoming test anxiety. Give us a call to get started!

The New SAT

The College Board has retired its pencil and paper SAT, and as of March 2024 will offer only its new digital test. 

The new SAT is a complete departure from the old SAT! Here are the biggest changes. You can find more details on the SAT website here.

  • The test is administered in a digital format only. A paper and pencil version will be made available only to students with an approved accommodation.
  • The digital test is adaptive. Each section is broken into two modules. The first module includes easy, medium, and hard questions. The level of difficulty of the second module will be based on how a student performed on the first module. This matters because if the student is given the less difficult second module, they won't be able to earn as many points as a student who's given the more difficult second module. 
  • The test has just two sections: a combined reading & writing section and a single math section.
  • The reading and writing passages are shorter (only 25-150 words!), and each passage is followed by only one question.
  • Calculators are allowed for the whole math section.
  • The digital SAT takes a total of 2 hours and 14 minutes instead of the current 3 hours.
  • Scores will be available in days rather than weeks.

Comparing the SAT to the ACT

The digital SAT is a very different testing experience than the ACT! 

  • Not only do students take the SAT on a computer, but the test itself varies from student to student based on how they perform on the first module. Conversely, the ACT is a paper and pencil test, and all students on a given test date receive the same test. (Note: ACT is offering the test online; however, their test will not be adaptive like the SAT, and they will continue to offer the paper and pencil version.)
  • The digital SAT has two sections (reading/writing and math), while the ACT has four (English, math, reading, and science).
  • There are 98 questions on the SAT and 215 questions on the ACT.
  • The SAT is about 45 minutes shorter than the ACT.
  • Scores from the SAT are available sooner than ACT scores.

You can see a table comparing the SAT and ACT here!

Our Approach to the SAT

Students who are unfamiliar with the SAT may find it daunting, but we'll break it down to manageable parts so that they can tackle it one step at a time! When we meet students where they are, we have the best chance of getting them where they want to be. This approach enables us to work with students with a wide variety of needs and goals. Our 1:1 in-person and online instruction is:

  • Holistic - The tutoring process starts with a pre-test and consultation so that we can understand your whole child. We want to learn about their strengths and weaknesses, academic experience, learning style, personality, interests, talents, and even their schedule. 
  • Customized - The info from the pre-test and consultation helps us make a strong tutor match and tailor an effective and efficient tutoring plan. We also use those details to recommend a realistic goal score, as well as the number and frequency of sessions to reach it. Because instruction is individualized, we can work with students who need a full program, others who want to focus on one or two test sections, those with learning differences, and students who are looking for a confidence boost.
  • Comprehensive - We address four core competencies in our SAT tutoring: test taking strategies, academic skills, timing/pacing, and test anxiety. A deficiency in any of these areas can lead to a score that doesn't reflect your child’s ability. If your child is approved for testing accommodations (such as extended time, multiple day testing, a reader, or alternate test formats), we’ll teach them how to successfully apply them.
  • Responsive - One-to-one tutoring is dynamic and engaging! Your tutor will adjust their instruction based on how your child does in session, as well as on homework and practice tests. We’ll also be responsive to your needs. Your tutoring director will check in regularly, answer any questions you have along the way, and send timely reminders and test-related information. 
  • Up-to-Date - Lessons are taught in the context of the new SAT’s digital, adaptive format. We’ve tutored hundreds of students for this style of test, so we are well-versed in how to prepare students to manage it. We’ll also make sure students are comfortable and confident with the unusual question types they’ll encounter on this new version of the test!

Our Results

Students who follow our tutoring recommendations make significant score increases. What does that involve?

  • meeting for the recommended number of sessions
  • completing homework
  • taking a practice test before each real test

Our test prep is about much more than the test! The work your child does to achieve strong scores will also positively impact their school experience. Test prep can lead to:

  • better grades
  • reduced anxiety
  • improved test and quiz scores
  • increased chance of being awarded scholarships

It’s always fun to hear about students trying a new activity or achieving a long-held goal because of their newfound self-awareness and confidence. Scroll down to read more about our students' test prep experiences!

Getting Started

In order to truly customize test prep, it’s vital for a student to take a diagnostic pre-test before tutoring begins. While they won’t be excited about this, in the end it saves time and money. (If your child has already taken a real or practice SAT, let your director know. We might be able to use it instead of our pre-test.) 

After the pre-test is completed, we'll provide a detailed score analysis, as well as a tutoring timeline that outlines how much tutoring we recommend, a goal score, and real test dates.

Sign up for one of our proctored pre-tests, a great opportunity to get a feel for the real test day. If your child is unable to make a proctored test date, they can take a free practice pre-test at home.

When to Start

Tutoring will be a weekly time commitment, so you want to think about when your child will have the space for it. Consider extracurricular activities, volunteering, part-time jobs, vacations, family commitments, and school projects. You can see real SAT dates here, and your director can help you determine the best timeline.

In a perfect world, we’d like for students to take a diagnostic pre-test at the end of sophomore year or summer before junior year. That gives us the most flexibility for planning and keeps anxiety at bay. But we don't live in a perfect world, so we’ll work with students whenever they’re ready!

Online Tutoring

Our online tutoring is a great option for students who live outside of the Chicagoland area AND local students, too! Contact us to learn more.