Recent Tutoring Session Reviews
"We reviewed the student's answers from a practice exam and outlined some possible strategies for improvement by next week. The student reports finishing the practice exams early but is plagued by simple errors, so we have uniformly decided to slow the pace of her test-taking. More specifically, the student has a good grasp of mechanics, but struggled with syntax on this practice test; we've decided to slow her pace on those questions as most wrong answers were a result of simple mistakes. The student also still struggles with critical reading, but, similarly, we have decided to slow her pace on these questions. The student's main impediment with these questions is a tendency to apply outside knowledge in her answer choices, whereas the correct answer is derived from the passage alone. The student will begin reading the passages twice and taking notes afterwards--this greater attention to detail should improve her score."
"The student and I began our math review today. We discussed the fundamentals of math which will be tested. She has many of the basics down, but needs to continue to practice (1) finding a common denominator, (2) exponent rules, and (3) square root rules. The latter two topics are crucial because they can be potentially tested in both the arithmetic and algebraic contexts. She is going to find these topics on the test website and do some practice problems in each area. Next session we will turn to basic algebra."
"The student did very well on this session's practice sentence completion, eloquently explaining his reasoning for each answer choice and missing only (a very difficult) one out of 14 questions! He sped easily through a practice test on set mathematics, but got tripped up on a couple of problems testing solid geometry. I encouraged him to be methodical and keep track of all of his data on problems that involve 4 or more steps, as many of the word problems do. Otherwise, his math skills are quite strong and I now feel confident in saying that his critical reading potential has been raised to a similar level through our sessions."
"In this session, we worked on SAT reading, writing, and math, focusing on math for the majority of the session. For the reading, we went over a social science passage, as I know she sometimes reads through these a bit too quickly and misses some of the key components of the passage. She also second-guesses answers by assuming that they are too simple. I reminded her that the simplest answers are often the best. For the math, we went over a few kinds of problems she has had some difficulty with previously. These were word problems related to linear equations. She did quite well overall, though she had some difficulty with the systems of equations. As these were some of the more difficult of these problems, her usual techniques of elimination and substitution did not work too well. It's important to stay flexible to get past these less typical problems."
"In this session, we worked on the no-calculator math section of the SAT. We did a few word problems and one problem involving complex numbers and their conjugates. The student seems to have a very solid foundation in math, so to assist her better, I asked that she take a diagnostic test before our next session."
"In this session, we worked on the reading and the calculator math section. We did a comparative historical reading, and in our math section, focused on cross multiplication and word problems using slope intercept formulas."