SAT / ACT Prep Online Guides and Tips

Francesca Fulciniti

Francesca graduated magna cum laude from Harvard and scored in the 99th percentile on the SATs. She's worked with many students on SAT prep and college counseling, and loves helping students capitalize on their strengths.

Recent Posts

How to Become a Lawyer: Complete Guide

Posted by Francesca Fulciniti | May 21, 2016 11:00:00 PM

Other High School, College Info

Law is one of the toughest trades to break into - there’s a lot of competition out there, and there’s a lot at stake (law school isn’t exactly cheap). If you’re interested in entering the legal profession, you should be well-informed about everything it takes to become a lawyer.

Here, I’ll go through all the steps of how to become a lawyer. Before I jump into that, however, I’ll begin by touching briefly on what the job market looks like for lawyers both now and in the future.

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Can You Fail the SAT?

The SAT is a pretty high-stakes test - it’s an important part of your college applications, which could mean trouble if you get a low score. But can you fail the SAT altogether?

The good news is that officially, it’s impossible to fail the SAT - but that doesn’t mean that a low score doesn't mean bad news. Here, I’ll review everything you need to know about why you can’t really fail the SAT, but why poor marks may as well count as failing.

Worried about your score? At the end, I’ll go over the steps you should take to pull them up.  

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PARCC Practice Tests: Where to Find and How to Use Them

If you (or your child) are worried about preparing for an upcoming PARCC exam, official practice tests are the best way to study.

Here, we’ll direct you to these PARCC practice materials. We’ll also explain how to use these tests (and other resources at your disposal) if you want to do well on an upcoming PARCC exam.

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What Is the ACT Kaplan ACT Low Cost Test Prep Program?

Posted by Francesca Fulciniti | May 13, 2016 8:30:00 AM

ACT General Info, ACT Logistics

The ACT has just announced its first official partnership with a test prep company: Kaplan. This may be big news for students who are planning to take the ACT - in cooperation with Kaplan, ACT, Inc. will be providing a low-cost (or even free) test prep program called ACT® Kaplan Online Prep Live.

There isn’t a ton of information just yet about the quality of the new test prep platform - students won’t be able to access it for a while - but we do know what the program should include and what it should cost. Free streaming courses are airing live in advance of the program launch - you can read more about what these courses are like towards the end of the post. 

Read more to find out what this new test prep partnership will mean for you!

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What Is the PARCC Test? Do You Have to Take It?

PARCC exams are relatively new and not particularly widespread, which means that finding reliable information on what they are and what they mean can be tough. In this guide, I’ll go over everything you need to know about these exams, including where they’re administered, what they test, and how to prepare.

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How to Become a Teacher: Expert Career Guide

Posted by Francesca Fulciniti | Apr 30, 2016 9:00:00 AM

Other High School, College Info

What’s more exciting than educating a new generation of students? If you’re interested in becoming a teacher and want some information about how to succeed in this profession, you’re in the right place. Here, I’ll walk you through how to become a teacher, explaining the steps you need to take in high school, college, and beyond.

First, though, I’ll touch briefly on the occupational outlook for teachers in the US - this way, you’ll be informed about projected job availability and income levels before jumping in.

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The 12 Best Journalism Schools

Posted by Francesca Fulciniti | Apr 29, 2016 11:00:00 PM

College Info

When you have a niche interest like journalism, it can be difficult to find reliable information on the strength of undergraduate programs. To help you get your college search going, we’ve rounded up a list of the best journalism schools out there for aspiring writers, editors, and reporters.

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Easy Scholarships to Win: How to Find and Apply

Posted by Francesca Fulciniti | Apr 17, 2016 8:30:00 AM

Financial Aid

Applying for scholarships can be stressful and time-consuming, especially if you’re looking at really competitive awards. Wouldn’t it be nice to apply for scholarships that you knew you had a really good shot at winning?

If you want to get your hands on some easy scholarship money, you’re in the right place. First, I’ll talk a little bit about what it means to be an easy-to-win scholarship. Then, I’ll get to the good stuff by directing you to the places you should look for these awards - you might be surprised at where you can find them - and how to put together a successful application.

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How to Find Scholarships for College: Expert Guide

Posted by Francesca Fulciniti | Apr 16, 2016 10:00:00 PM

Financial Aid

Paying for college is already stressful and a bit overwhelming - applying for scholarships shouldn’t be too. To help you navigate the process of finding (and applying for) this helpful type of financial aid, we’ve put together this strategy guide with everything you need to know about how to find scholarships that are right for you.

You’ll learn about searching for awards in the right places (perhaps the most difficult part of the whole process), selecting the right scholarships, and putting together high-quality applications.

Let’s get started!

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Can You Write in the SAT Booklet?

Posted by Francesca Fulciniti | Apr 16, 2016 3:00:00 PM

SAT Logistics, SAT General Info

After you take the SAT, your score will be determined by the little bubbles you fill in on your scantron sheet - a sheet where there’s no place to show your work.

It’s normal (even important) to want to take notes and work through problems. Since you won't receive any extra scratch paper in the testing room, your SAT booklet is the place to do it. Here, I’ll go over what, how, and even why you should write in your test booklet. That little stack of paper might end up more helpful than you expected.

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The 8 Best Scholarship Websites and Search Tools

Posted by Francesca Fulciniti | Apr 16, 2016 2:00:00 PM

Financial Aid

Searching for relevant scholarships is perhaps the most frustrating part of the scholarship application process. There are so many awards out there, but it’s hard to know which ones are worth applying to without carefully sifting through an overwhelming amount of information.

To make your search just a little bit easier, we’ve compiled some of the best scholarship websites (and offline search tools!) you can use to find scholarships. Of course, some are better than others - I’ll also go into the strengths and weaknesses of each scholarship search method.

At the end of the post, you’ll find tips for getting the most out of these scholarship search tools. They’re only helpful if you know how to use them effectively and efficiently - these strategies will help you navigate the (sometimes confusing) world of scholarship search tools.

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How to Get a Merit Scholarship: 6-Step Guide

Posted by Francesca Fulciniti | Apr 15, 2016 8:00:00 AM

Financial Aid

If you’re looking for a way to fund your college education, you should definitely check out merit scholarships. They’re especially great options for high-achieving students who may not qualify for much need-based financial aid. The best part of getting a merit scholarship is, of course, that you’re essentially getting free money for school. But how to get a merit scholarship can still be confusing and overwhelming.

In this post, I’ll explain what defines a merit scholarship before going into both where you can find them and how you can get them. At the end, you’ll find a list of some of the top merit awards available - this way, you can get a head start on getting that cash.

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Free ACT Practice Tests: Massive Collection of Online Sources

Posted by Francesca Fulciniti | Apr 9, 2016 10:00:00 PM

ACT General Info

When you’re trying to prepare for the ACT, the last thing you want to worry about is finding ACT practice tests. To help make the process a little less stressful for you, we’ve compiled this huge list of sources for free ACT practice tests and questions.

Not all practice tests are created equal, though. For each test source, I’ll talk about how you can best use the practice material to best prepare for the ACT.

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Can You Write in the ACT Test Booklet?

Posted by Francesca Fulciniti | Apr 9, 2016 3:00:00 PM

ACT General Info

I don’t know about you, but scratch paper is really useful for me when I’m working through a test. You might know that you’re not allowed to bring paper or notebooks in with you when you take the ACT - you also won't get scratch paper. But are you allowed to write on the ACT test booklet?

The short answer is yes, but there’s a bit more to it than that. Here, I’ll go through exactly when and why you’re allowed to write on the booklet. Then, I’ll tell you how you can use the ACT booklet to your advantage by taking the most effective notes possible.

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How Should You Spend the Night Before the ACT?

Posted by Francesca Fulciniti | Apr 7, 2016 8:30:00 AM

ACT General Info

Planning the night before the test is the last thing you really have to worry about before taking the ACT. But how do you know what to do so that you get the best score possible the next day?

This comprehensive guide will lay out everything you should (and shouldn’t) do before you head to bed the night before the ACT. Follow these tips - covering everything from logistical concerns to last-minute exam prep - to wake up confident, refreshed, and ready.

Let’s get started!

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