SAT / ACT Prep Online Guides and Tips

Dora Seigel

As an SAT/ACT tutor, Dora has guided many students to test prep success. She loves watching students succeed and is committed to helping you get there. Dora received a full-tuition merit based scholarship to University of Southern California. She graduated magna cum laude and scored in the 99th percentile on the ACT. She is also passionate about acting, writing, and photography.

Recent Posts

PSAT Score Needed for National Merit Scholarship

Each year about 1.6 million juniors take the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT) in the hopes of qualifying for the National Merit Scholarship Program.

But what score do you actually need to earn Semifinalist distinction? In this guide, we'll tell you what PSAT/NMSQT score you need in order to qualify for Semifinalist status in your state and potentially move on to win a National Merit scholarship.

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How Long Does It Take to Send SAT Scores?

If you're applying to college, you need to know the answer to one question: how long does it take to send SAT scores? Knowing this will help you plan when you will take your SAT.

You want to make sure that whenever you take the SAT, you have time to get that score sent to your target schools before the deadline. When is your last opportunity to take the SAT if you're applying Early Decision or Early Action? When is your last opportunity to take the SAT if you're applying Regular Decision? And how do score reports work if you’re taking the digital SAT? I'll answer these questions and more in this short article.

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61 Great Medical Programs for High School Students + Advice

Thinking about a career in medicine? I highly recommend trying out some medical experiences in high school before committing to a pre-med track. Many of my high school friends who hoped to go into medicine ended up changing their major during college when the pre-med courses got too difficult.

Doing a medical internship, summer program, or community service project in high school can help you decide if medicine is the right track for you before you waste time and money going pre-med in college. This guide will explain what experiences are open to you as a high school student, what those experiences involve, and how you will benefit from them.

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What Do Colleges Look For in Admissions? Why Are the SAT/ACT Important?


Applying to college soon? Curious about what colleges are looking for in applicants, especially when it comes to SAT or ACT scores? Not sure how you stack up against other applicants at your dream school? 

If you feel like you have more questions than answers about what colleges look for in admissions, you're note alone. The college admissions process can be very confusing, and it's easy to feel lost and frustrated. In this article, we'll tell you what colleges look for in admissions and how to make your application the best it can be. We'll cover: 

  • What colleges look for in applicants 
  • Why SAT and ACT test scores are important 
  • How understanding college admissions criteria can help your own college admissions process

Let's dive in! 

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The Best IB History Notes and Study Guide for SL/HL

If you want to do well on the IB History exam, you'll need to have a solid set of notes to study from. This can be difficult though if you're missing notes or feel like some of your own notes don't cover certain topics in enough depth. Luckily, we're here to help! We've assembled the best FREE online IB History notes into this complete study guide.

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When Do IB Results and Scores Come Out?

You're in an IB Diploma Programme or a few IB classes, and you've tirelessly worked all year (or two years) studying for your SLs and HLs. You sat for the exams, where you probably developed carpal tunnel syndrome. And you can relate a little too well to this video, but you're hoping you did a bit better on your IB exams.

So when do you get your IB exam scores? How do you get your scores? What does your score mean? I will answer all these questions and more in this article.

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What Is NUMATS? Should You Participate?

In this guide, I'll be discussing the old Northwestern University's Midwest Academic Talent Search Program, or NUMATS. NUMATS provided advanced tests to younger students to find their academic strengths and weaknesses and to suggested academic supplements to help these gifted students thrive. 

As of 2022, NUMATS is no more. Northwestern has replaced NUMATS with the Northwestern Center for Talent Development. The Northwestern CTD offers the same above-level testing for students and and lots of summer programs, and it has expanded some of its other offerings as well. You'll be able to learn more about the Northwestern CTD in our complete guide

But if you want to learn more about the legacy NUMATS program and get additional tips for making your Northwestern CTD application stand on! 

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Complete List of Performing Arts Colleges in California

If the stage calls your name, and you're interested in pursuing a degree in one of the performing arts (theatre/dance/music) in California, then this article is for you. I've compiled a comprehensive list of all of the universities and conservatory programs in California that offer performing arts degrees (Bachelor's, Master's, and Doctorate's).


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The Best SAT Math Practice Tests and Questions

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Posted by Dora Seigel

SAT Math

For SAT Math prep, no matter your strategy—whether you're doing self-study, taking a prep class, or working with a tutor—you need to be working with real SAT Math practice materials. The SAT Math test will be different from any other math test you've taken. You need to work with the real material to get used to the pacing and style of this unique test.

In this guide, I'll show you where to find official SAT Math practice tests and questions, and go over what materials to avoid.

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The 13 Best Performing Arts Colleges in the US

Attending a performing arts college is a big decision—you're committing to focusing exclusively on your art for four years. Once you've made this choice, you need to find a school that'll allow you to accomplish your career goals.

In order to help you find the right school for you, I've compiled a list of the best performing arts colleges in the US. Keep reading to see what these are!

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7 Most Common Mistakes on ACT Math & How to Avoid Them

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Posted by Dora Seigel

ACT Math

I've tutored many students on the ACT Math section, and they often found it frustrating. Some struggled because they considered themselves better English students and felt overwhelmed by the content and pacing of ACT Math. Others found that even though they considered themselves strong math students, they had a hard time getting the score they wanted in the ACT Math section. But all these students typically made the same types of mistakes. 

In this article, I’ll go over the seven most common mistakes students make on the ACT Math section and how to avoid them.

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What Is the IB Curriculum? What Are IB Diploma Requirements?

If you're reading this article, we assume you know a little bit about the International Baccalaureate (IB) program. If not, we encourage you to read our introductory guide to what this program entails.As a brief refresher, the IB program was started in the 1960s and has become a rigorous, internationally recognized diploma program that students all around the world can earn to gain entry into the university of their choice.

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Which IB Courses Can I Take Online? Can I Get an Online IB Diploma?

Wow, the world has changed a lot for us old folks who graduated high school in 2010. While you can't get your International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma online, you can take several IB courses online if you are enrolled in an IB World School.

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Can You Take the SAT After High School? Expert Guide

While people associate the SAT with high school students, there are several reasons someone may need or want to take the SAT after high school. But can you take the SAT after high school? Absolutely! I took the SAT this past year as an adult and will be taking it again this May.

In this guide, I’ll cover the reasons you may want to take the SAT as an adult, how to register, how testing is different as an adult, and more advice.

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The Complete List of IB Courses and Classes

What are all the International Baccalaureate (IB) courses available to take? Here, we give you the complete list of all Standard Level (SL) and Higher Level (HL) IB classes.

Every IB school is different, so your own school might not offer all the IB courses below. However, these are all the classes the IB has created a curriculum and test for. There are in total 57 classes (counting HL and SL separately). I have categorized them by the categories that the IB defines as the six subject groups.

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