The right way to use practice tests for standardized testing

Posted by Liam B. on 5/10/21 2:54 PM

Though standardized tests are often cast as objective measures of innate knowledge, nothing could be further from the truth. Rather, taking standardized tests is a skill that can be taught. Additionally, how well you perform on test day is not just a function of how much you have learned or studied, but also a function of how consistently you deliver each time you take a practice test. 

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Tags: study skills, test anxiety

How to think like an AP Rater/Reader on the AP English Language “Synthesis” Free Response Question 1

Posted by Cassandra M. on 10/7/20 9:28 AM

As someone who tutors AP English Language and Composition (lovingly referred to as AP Lang) and as someone who struggled with timed writing herself, I know how daunting a task it can be to score a 5. Luckily for you, I’ve also served as an AP Rater/Reader and can offer some additional insight into what we are told to look for while scoring a student Free Response Question 1 Synthesis essay on the AP Lang exam.

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Tags: study skills, test anxiety, English, expository writing, AP exams

How to tackle nerves on the ACT

Posted by Tiwa on 1/8/20 11:00 AM

So you’ve decided to take the ACT! As an experience tutor of this test, one common pattern I see in my students is a fear of taking the exam. After all, for many people, this is the first large standardized test they’ve ever encountered. Although it might seem daunting, with some hard work, the test can be manageable. Here are some tips to help guide you as you prepare to take the ACT:

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Tags: test anxiety, ACT

Fear and the LSAT: a mindful approach to test day jitters

Posted by Preston on 8/14/19 11:00 AM

Take a moment to envision your test day.

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Tags: LSAT, test anxiety

Mastering the SAT Reading Section

Posted by Elizabeth L. on 8/7/19 11:00 AM

For many, the reading section of the SAT is daunting—sure, you’ve read plenty of books over the years and your vocabulary isn’t half bad, but the prospect of analyzing four long and two shorter passages over the course of only 65 minutes can feel like an impossible task. Luckily, as with most of the SAT, solid strategies can make the process feel a much more manageable—and maybe even a little bit enjoyable! Here are a few strategies to help you get started.

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Tags: test anxiety, SAT

Tips for Studying Effectively for the SAT and ACT

Posted by Marisa on 7/29/19 11:00 AM

It can be overwhelming to think about studying for the SAT or ACT. Where do you even start? In this post, I’ll outline a few key strategies to guide you through your test preparation.

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Tags: test anxiety, ACT, SAT

What to Wear on Test Day (Seriously)

Posted by Alex S on 5/29/19 5:26 PM

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Tags: admissions coaching, study skills, test anxiety

Three Ways to Build Good Vocab Habits for Standardized Tests

Posted by Abhi on 8/31/18 3:16 PM

When taking standardized tests, especially the SAT or GRE, people often struggle with memorizing enough words for the (often tricky) vocabulary sections. When it comes to vocabulary, unlike other parts of the test, you either know the word or you don’t. So how can you ensure you improve your vocabulary memory for the test? It’s all about building good habits!

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Tags: study skills, test anxiety, English

Advice on MCAT Breakdowns, Depression, and Stress

Posted by Weike Wang on 1/27/16 10:00 AM

The MCAT is a brutal test.  Having taken it and tutored numerous MCAT students (as well GMAT and GRE students), I can say with absolute certainty that I seen more students break down over the MCAT than they have with any other test.  Every one of my MCAT students has, at some point, teared up over this test and cursed it to hell.

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Tags: test anxiety, MCAT

Mentally Conquering the MCAT

Posted by Nikita Saxena on 10/19/15 10:00 AM

 Test anxiety is real! Good thing is it's manageable.

For many pre-med students, the MCAT can feel like the final ‘hurdle’ before an application cycle begins. You’ve spent a couple years in college trying to do your best in school, be involved in extracurriculars, and form relationships with professors who will eventually provide recommendation letters. All that’s left is this big, scary, standardized test. There’s no surprise that it’s important to prepare well content-wise and to do a lot of practice exams -- those are pieces of advice people will talk about time and time again. Unfortunately, what people talk about a little less is all of the nerves and anxiety that inevitably creep up during the preparation process. It’s crucial to be in your best state of mind while both preparing for and taking the MCAT, so here are some tips to make you as relaxed as possible.

  1. Have a plan.

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Tags: test anxiety, MCAT