Why take a prep course?
Getting a good SAT or ACT score has many big advantages. In addition to giving you a wider selection of colleges to choose from, it opens the door to many financial and employment benefits after graduation.
Taking a comprehensive prep course is the most efficient and cost-effective way to increase your score, as well as your short-term and long-term opportunities.
By now, you can probably guess which side we’re on. But here are some studies from top universities to help you decide for yourself.
Taking a comprehensive prep course can help you achieve a better score and academic success in three key ways:
Fill in knowledge gaps.
Brush up on what you’ve learned in class, and catch up on anything you missed along the way. No one picks up everything the first time around.
Build a strategy.
Just as important as what you’ll be tested on, is how you’ll be tested and scored. Knowing how to gauge your time, when to guess, and how to choose between two answers can make all the difference.
Build your confidence.
You could know all the information perfectly and still freeze up during an exam. Becoming familiar with the questions and test format can significantly lower your test anxiety and improve your score.
In addition to need-based aid, there is a movement in college admissions today towards merit-based aid – a scholarship based on academic, artistic, athletic, and other merit-based criteria.
Merit-based aid depends on two factors: SAT or ACT scores and high school grades.iii
i. Hambrick, David Z, and Christopher Chabris. “Yes, IQ Really Matters: Critics of the SAT and other standardized testing are disregarding the data.” Slate. The Slate Group. April 14, 2014. April 21/2014.
ii. Calculated using the average institutional no-need and merit grant figure in National Postsecondary Student Aid Study by the National Center for Education Statistics and the number of students receiving that type of aid, which was approximately 2.1 million.
iii. 2008 NACAC Discussion Paper, Financial Aid and Admission: Tuition Discounting, Merit Aid and Need-aware Admission.
iv. Korn, Melissa. “Job Hunting? Dig Up Those Old SAT Scores.” The Wall Street Journal. Dow Jones & Company. March 25, 2014. April 9, 2014.