SAT / ACT Prep Online Guides and Tips

Ashley Robinson

Ashley Sufflé Robinson has a Ph.D. in 19th Century English Literature. As a content writer for PrepScholar, Ashley is passionate about giving college-bound students the in-depth information they need to get into the school of their dreams.

Recent Posts

Cracking the ACT Review: Is This ACT Prep Book Right for You?

Posted by Ashley Robinson | Jul 29, 2020 1:00:00 PM

ACT Strategies

Many high schoolers have heard of the Princeton Review ACT prep books, including Cracking the ACT. But is Cracking the ACT the right ACT prep book for you? To help you figure that out, we’ve put together a comprehensive review of Cracking the ACT. 

To help you get a sense of what’s covered in Cracking the ACT and how it can improve your ACT score, we will: 

  • Explain what Cracking the ACT covers, and where to find copies of the book
  • Summarize each section of the book, focusing on the ACT topics and test taking strategies they discuss 
  • Assess the book’s strengths and weaknesses 
  • Explain how to decide if Cracking the ACT is right for you.

Now, let’s take a closer look!

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Barron's ACT 36 Review: Should You Buy This Book?

Posted by Ashley Robinson | Jul 29, 2020 12:00:00 PM

ACT Strategies

Barron’s is a well-known provider of test preparation resources, and their ACT prep book, Barron’s ACT 36 4th Edition, is a go-to resource for students taking the ACT.  

But just because a study guide is popular doesn’t mean it’s the best one for you! If you want to get the most out of your ACT study time, then you need to make sure you’re selecting the right ACT guidebook for the job. 

That’s why we’ve put together this comprehensive review of Barron’s ACT 36. This article will provide a full rundown of the book, including explaining: 

  • What Barron’s ACT 36 is
  • What content is covered in the book, chapter by chapter 
  • The Seven pros and cons of the book
  • How to decide if you would benefit from using Barron’s ACT 36 for test prep

Let’s get started!

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COVID-19 ACT Test Cancellations and What to Do Next

Posted by Ashley Robinson | Jul 12, 2020 6:00:00 PM

ACT Logistics

As a result of the coronavirus (COVID-19) epidemic, the ACT has cancelled numerous test dates in 2020, including the March, April, and May (and some June) ACT exams. They've also closed some testing centers for the July 18th test date, so not all students will be able to take their scheduled exams at that time, either.

If you're impacted by this ACT test date cancellation, you're probably wondering what's next. Our experts are answering all of your frequently asked questions below.

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My ACT/SAT Test Cancelled Due to Coronavirus. Now What?

Posted by Ashley Robinson | Jul 12, 2020 3:00:00 PM

ACT General Info, SAT General Info

ACT and SAT dates in March, April, May, and June 2020 have been canceled due to COVID-19. Some (but not all!) testing sites have also been closed in July, which means some students may be unable to take their July ACT exam, either.

If you've been caught in these cancellations, you're probably feeling pretty stressed out. When will you get to retake your test? And is there a special process for registering for the SAT after cancellation?

If these unknowns have left you feeling confused about how to handle ACT/SAT score requirements for your college applications, let us help you out. In this article, we'll walk you through what to do after your SAT or ACT test has canceled. We'll explain:

  • How to transfer your registration for a canceled exam
  • How to cancel your registration if you don't want to move your exam date
  • If there are special accommodations for certain groups of students
  • How to choose the right option for you

We'll also go over the available next steps for students who haven't taken the ACT/SAT yet but want to enroll in college in Fall 2020.

We know there can be a lot of anxiety surrounding test scores, but rest assured — you have options!


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How to Stay on Top of Your Education During the Summer

Posted by Ashley Robinson | Jul 11, 2020 8:00:00 AM

Other High School

Public school districts across the U.S. made the difficult decision to end the Spring 2020 semester early due to the challenges of distance learning imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic. For safety reasons, some schools are considering the option of pushing back the start date of the Fall 2020 semester and/or moving fall classes online. 

Both of these choices mean that many students will have a much longer summer break than usual, which has caused parents, students, and educators to ask: How will a longer break from formal education affect students’ learning? 

This article tackles this question by explaining how an extended break from education can negatively affect students’ learning over time. To help students and parents combat the negative effects of extra summer vacation, this article also provides: 

  • Five resources for bridging the gap in learning this summer
  • Four tips for students who want to continue their education independently, and
  • Three tips to help parents support summer learning till school’s back in session

There’s a lot to talk about, so let’s get started. 


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6 Ways College May Be Different in Fall 2020...And 1 Way It Won't

Posted by Ashley Robinson | Jun 30, 2020 2:00:00 PM

College Info

College students are eagerly awaiting an answer to the question, “What’s going to happen on college campuses this fall because of coronavirus?” Although colleges and universities are working hard to plan for the fall semester, the truth is that most universities haven’t finalized their COVID-19 policies for the fall. 

While what happens with college this fall is out of your hands, we’re starting to get a sense for the possible changes to college life students can expect. 

In this article, we’ll go over six ways college may be different in Fall 2020. We’ll also help you assess how these changes could impact your life and help you figure out how to tackle these challenges! 

So let’s dive in. 

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Will Coronavirus Make It Easier to Get Into College?

Posted by Ashley Robinson | Jun 29, 2020 5:00:00 PM

College Admissions

With so many aspects of the college application and admissions process being postponed, reformatted, or cancelled due to the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic, many students who plan to apply to college during Fall 2021 are wondering if getting into college might be less difficult during the next year. 

While it isn’t really possible to nail down a concrete answer to the question of whether getting into college will be easier in 2021, there will be several changes to the college admissions process that could make the admissions process easier for certain students. 

To help you understand the possible advantages of the Fall 2021 college admissions situation, we’ll cover the following in this article, including: 

  • Explaining the most important changes to college admissions for Fall 2021
  • Analyzing the aspects of the Fall 2021 college admissions process that may make it easier to get into college 
  • Five tips for applying to college during Fall 2021

Let’s jump in! 


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How to Write a Penn State Essay in 3 Steps

Posted by Ashley Robinson | Jun 27, 2020 2:00:00 PM

College Essays

If you want to go to Penn State, then the Penn State essay is one of your big chances to show how you’re different from other students in your application for admission. In order to really make this component of the application work to your advantage, you’ll need a solid strategy for writing a concise, unique, and persuasive Penn State essay!

Writing your Penn State admissions essay might seem intimidating at first, but we’re here to guide you through the process. This article will help you write a stellar Penn State essay by: 

  • Explaining purpose of the Penn State Essay
  • Outlining the three steps to writing a solid Penn State Essay
  • Providing a breakdown of Penn State essay examples
  • Giving you three practical tips for writing an exceptional essay

Let’s dive in!


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The Best 12 Math Competitions for High School Students

Posted by Ashley Robinson | Jun 16, 2020 8:00:00 PM


Math competitions are a fantastic extracurricular activity for high school students. Math competitions help students improve their math skills, earn scholarships, and stand out as college applicants. 

If you are interested in getting into high school math competitions but aren’t sure where to begin, this article is for you. We’ll give you all the details on 12 math competitions for high school students, including the eligibility requirements and cash prize opportunities for each competition. 

We’ll also briefly explain how to decide which math competition is right for you and how math competitions can help you shine as a college applicant. So let’s get started!


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How to Stand Out in the Regeneron Science Talent Search

Posted by Ashley Robinson | Jun 9, 2020 7:00:00 PM


Each year, high school seniors from all over the U.S. enter their independent, original scientific research in The Regeneron Science Talent Search (formerly called the Westinghouse Science Awards). The competition invites the most promising applicants to showcase their research projects in Washington, D.C. and compete for big cash prizes. 

Are you a budding scientist looking to earn some extra cash for college? If so, then you should consider entering the Regeneron STS! 

To help you put together a top notch Regeneron STS application, this article will: 

  • Explain how the talent search works
  • Give you a step-by-step breakdown of the application and competition judging criteria
  • Provide examples of winning STS research projects
  • Walk you through four tips for creating a winning application

Are you ready? Let’s get started!


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15 Awesome 2 Player Card Games

Posted by Ashley Robinson | Jun 2, 2020 5:00:00 PM

General Education

If you’re looking for a relaxing way to spend an evening that won’t break the bank, consider adding some 2 person card games into your rotation of activities. Two person card games are a great way to exercise your brain and have fun in the process!   

This article will explain how you can play 15 of the best 2 person card games for kids, adults, and families--and all you need is a standard 52 card deck. For each game, we’ll explain: 

  • What age group the game is best suited for 
  • How to play each game 

If you want to try out a themed card game for two, we’ve also found 5 specialty card games that will have you shuffling and dealing on repeat. 

Ready to play? Then let’s dive in. 


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Are Universities Changing How They Evaluate 2020 AP Scores?

Posted by Ashley Robinson | May 31, 2020 3:00:00 PM

Advanced Placement (AP)

The coronavirus global pandemic has forced the College Board to make lots of changes to their usual AP testing protocol and format for the 2020 exam cycle. Colleges and universities have taken notice of the changed conditions for AP testing this year, and many students are wondering how their chances of earning college credit through AP scores will be affected by these changes. 

In the article, we’ll provide a full overview of the current info surrounding how universities are handling AP scores during the COVID-19 pandemic. We give you a full run-down on why schools are reconsidering whether this year’s AP exams will count for full college course credit. We’ll also give you three tips for staying up-to-date on changes to schools’ AP score policies as you navigate these changes over the next few months. 

Let’s get started!

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University of California Drops SAT/ACT Scores: What It Means for You

Yep, you read that correctly: in May 2020, the University of California Board of Regents voted unanimously to stop requiring the ACT and SAT as part of admissions applications. In other words, if you’re applying to a UC school, you won’t have to submit your ACT or SAT scores. 

Before you get super excited, there are some caveats you should know about. That’s why we’re breaking down the changes — and answer your FAQs! — below. 


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September SAT 2020: Everything You Need to Know

Posted by Ashley Robinson | May 25, 2020 9:00:00 AM

SAT Logistics

COVID-19 has led to the cancellations of SAT dates in March, May, and June 2020. Unfortunately, this has thrown a wrench in many high school students’ plans, especially if they’re applying for college in the near future! 

As affected students work to reschedule their tests, the College Board expects there to be a much higher demand for fall testing opportunities. That’s why the CollegeBoard has added a September SAT date in the fall 2020

In this article, we’ll tell you everything we know about the September 26, 2020 SAT date as of right now. Keep in mind that information about the exam is still being released, so be sure to check back for updates.


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ISEE Test Dates 2020: Your Guide to Choosing

Posted by Ashley Robinson | May 16, 2020 11:00:00 AM

Other High School, Early Achievers (7th/8th Grade)

The ISEE, or Independent School Entrance Examination, is a test that many students have to take to gain admission into private middle and high schools in the United States. That means that if you want to attend a private school—or if you want your child to attend a private school—there's a good chance you'll have to register for the ISEE as part of your admissions application.

In this article, we're going to explain everything you need to know about ISEE registration, including:

  • Which test level to register for
  • How to choose ISEE test dates
  • A step-by-step guide to ISEE test registration
  • A quick look at what to expect from the ISEE exam

Keep in mind that ISEE test registration—which includes choosing ISEE test dates, locations, and paying for the exam—must be done by a legal adult.

Now, without further ado, let's talk about the ISEE exam!


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