One High School Senior’s Experience with PrepMe and the SAT

By Brooke Giles, Rising Senior, Wakefield High School

Filed under: Naviance Network, Test Prep

Brooke, a Hobsons high school intern, describes her experience with traditional test prep courses and how PrepMe helped improve her confidence on the SAT.

My Experience with Traditional SAT Classes

Taking an SAT prep class can help improve a student’s score by giving them strategies such as how to write the essay, how to approach difficult Math questions or tips on saving time on the awfully long Reading selections. You even get to take practice exams to simulate a real testing environment.

While SAT prep classes can be beneficial to students, it’s hard to ensure that the student is getting what they need from the class. In my SAT prep class, every student had different strengths and weaknesses. Some kids needed help with grammar and some were strong in every subject, and just wanted tips on the test overall.

For me, I had difficulty with Math. Sure I had gotten A’s in all my math courses that would be covered on the test, but the thought of the Math section of the SAT still made me sick. If the PSAT were indication, the SAT would not approach Math questions in a straightforward manner. My hope was that the course would help me decode the dreaded subject.

But it didn’t go that way at all.

Instead, for three hours twice a week for about a month, my class focused on grammar and reading. After a long school day, reading as a class and answering questions as class was tiring. Even if we understood a concept, our teacher still taught us material we already knew. We would hardly look at Math and only talked about our essay in passing.

Needless to say, my Critical Reading and Writing scores were great. But my essay scores and Math scores almost mirrored the results of my last practice exam. I knew I only had the summer to improve. But I knew that I didn’t want another class, or have to do it on my own with a book.

Studying with a Personalized Schedule

I was extremely excited to find PrepMe. After I entered my previous scores and took a diagnostic exam, PrepMe developed a program to help me where I was struggling. PrepMe is also interactive, so you’re not just sitting there being lectured. But what I like the most is that PrepMe is self-paced, and provides a schedule to help you complete the content before your test.

This past summer, I used PrepMe to study for my SAT and was pleased with its results.

PrepMe was great once the school year started because it worked with my busy schedule. I could work on it while I waited for my cheerleading practice to start, or during my free period. No matter how my schedule looked, I was able to complete lessons.

How PrepMe Helped Improve My Confidence on the SAT

In November of my senior year, I retook my SAT with much more confidence than I had before. But this time around, I was familiar with the language of the SAT and was able to identify what they were really asking. Even though the Critical Reading and Writing portions of the SAT were easy to me the first time around, PrepMe strengthened my performance. I paid more attention to detail, and found those sections of the test even easier than before.

The real difference was on the Math portion of the test. Here I was able to use strategies that were given to me from PrepMe in order to answer more questions than before. I wasn’t afraid to bubble in my answer choice, because PrepMe had given me the tools needed to check if my answer was correct. There were even questions similar to the ones on the previous test that had been hard, but I was now able to answer them with ease.

I knew that this SAT would be vital, as it was going to be the last SAT score that colleges were going to see. I was able to take this test with fresh eyes, and I felt more prepared than I had on the previous test. After my test, I shared how PrepMe had helped me on my SAT with my school’s College and Career Counselor, who coordinates SAT prep classes. He was so impressed with PrepMe that he now uses it as the only test prep program for our school.Now many students are now getting a test prep program that is tailored to their needs, and will hopefully have the confidence to excel on their tests, just like I did.

Brooke was accepted into all of the colleges to which she applied and will be attending University of Maryland in the fall.

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