Recent Tutoring Session Reviews
"In this last session before the student's test on May 3rd, we reviewed another full practice sat in which he scored between 2200 and 2370. Once again, this is very impressive but he is within striking distance of a perfect score so that is still the goal. As with the last test, he scored nearly perfect on critical reading and writing, with only one vocab question missed and two writing errors. He also had his strongest essay yet, with a provocative thesis and well connected but differentiated evidence. He was able to easily solve all but one math problem that was incredibly tricky. Overall, he appears to be in excellent shape for the test next week. In response to his testing fatigue, I assigned a strict regimen of relaxation and simple review of the study sheets we created over the past few months. He knows everything he needs to and he is in the perfect position in terms of comfort and confidence to succeed on this test: he is not in a do or die situation and he knows that even his worst is still an extremely respectable score (around 2200). This is also a test during his junior year, so he always has the option of taking another one next year, but I don't anticipate any need for this, as I truly believe that he could score high 2300's or even a perfect 24."
"The student and I had a review session two days ago. He had taken the SAT before, and will be taking it again, so he just wanted to do some review on the things he had trouble with his first time. His critical reading and writing scores were 650 and 710, which are fantastic. He is looking to bring his math up from 580 to 650 also, as it would get him a 1300 on critical reading and math combined. We looked at his score report and could see that the only places he really struggled was towards the end of each section, where the hard questions are, and he also had a little trouble pacing himself. He had been doing some practice so we used that to go over harder questions, along with how he can strategize to make sure he has time to answer enough questions to reach his target score. I don't think he'll have trouble getting it, as students tend to increase their score a lot the second time they take the SAT."
"The student and I had an excellent final meeting preparing her for the SAT. She is feeling well-prepared for the test and I agree with her that she's in good shape -- my only concern at this point is that she get enough sleep before the test so that she's in top mental form! We spent today's section reviewing all the individual parts of the test in order to remind her of all of her techniques for the sections. She had written another sample essay in preparation for today's meeting (a personal essay about the dangers of knowledge) which was extremely compelling and well-written - her best essay to date! (She could improve it still further by outlining a bit more abstractly how her thoughts fit the topic at the opening or close of the essay.) The writing section should go well for her, especially if she remembers the key errors that the SAT tests (subject-verb agreement, parallel structures, pronouns, comparison of equivalent things, prepositions). On the Critical Reading section, the student feels very confident about reading comprehension, but continues to struggle a bit with vocabulary in the sentence completion section (though her vocabulary has expanded over the course of our sessions!). She should remember that skipping a question is always a good option if she can't eliminate two possible answers! We finished our review with Mathematics -- the student continues to be strong here, and we reviewed a few strategies that continue to be tricky for her (such as combinations). Finally, the student and I discussed strategies for staying focused and avoiding stress through the test. The excellent news is that our sessions seem to have given her a lot of confidence about the test. I'm very hopeful that she will do well on this test - and I'm looking forward to hearing her results! Good luck!"