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

New SAT Practice Tests: 3 Tips for Finding and Using Them

Posted by Francesca Fulciniti | Sep 22, 2019 12:00:00 PM

New SAT

In order to study effectively for the SAT, it’s important to use practice tests that test the same strategy and content as the SAT does. With the major SAT overhaul in 2016, this means turning to updated, more recent materials.

Official College Board practice tests are the gold standard when it comes to prep materials. Here, you’ll find free links to all official SAT practice tests, essays, answer keys, and scoring guides, along with tips and strategies for how to use them.

You might notice, though, that there’s a limit to how many free official SAT resources are available. For those who want to prep with other high-quality SAT practice problems and tests, we offer you some useful alternatives to official practice tests.

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The 11 Best Pre-Med Schools to Help You Become a Doctor

Posted by Francesca Fulciniti | Sep 22, 2019 8:30:00 AM

College Info

Choosing an undergraduate school is the first major step any student will make on the path to becoming a physician. If you're an aspiring pre-med student, you'll want to give yourself the best opportunities and support networks in college and beyond. Applying to (and succeeding in) medical school is a grueling process, so you'll need to be prepared.

Here, I'll talk about what actually makes a school good for pre-meds before getting into the good stuff: the list of best pre-med schools.

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The 27 Best Liberal Arts Colleges in the Country

Posted by Francesca Fulciniti | Sep 12, 2019 12:00:00 PM

College Info

There are a lot of different ranking systems out there for almost any type of college you can imagine. Even though these rankings purport to use sophisticated algorithms and calculations, all the final lists seem to differ from each other. How should you be able to figure out what the best liberal arts colleges are when there so many different ranking systems out there?

I did the work for you by considering many of the top lists and compiling rankings of liberal arts colleges; in the beginning of this article, I'll lay out how exactly these ranking systems work. If you're looking for a realistic, reliable ranking list for the best liberal arts colleges in the country, then you're in luck.

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Pell Grant Eligibility and Requirements: Do You Qualify?

Posted by Francesca Fulciniti | Sep 8, 2019 11:13:00 PM

Financial Aid

Pell Grants are awarded by the federal US government to help students pay for college or vocational school. Figuring out whether you're eligible can be confusing, but this post will guide you through all the eligibility requirements you should know about if you want to apply for a federal Pell Grant.

If you need a basic intro to what the Pell Grant is, check out our overview guide.

Students are automatically considered for the Pell Grant when they submit their Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA. For 2020, the deadline for submitting a FAFSA (and thus being considered for a Pell Grant) is June 30th. You can learn more about Pell Grant submission here. In this post, we'll cover the following:

  • How to figure out whether you're eligible for federal student aid
  • What the Pell Grant income limits are
  • How to figure out whether you're eligible for the Pell Grant specifically
  • Pell Grant award maximums
  • What you can do to increase your chances of getting the Pell Grant
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ACT Full Fees & Registration: What's the Total Cost of the ACT?

Posted by Francesca Fulciniti | Sep 1, 2019 12:00:00 PM

ACT Logistics

Just like many parts of the college application process, taking the ACT (and even using your ACT scores) means an assortment of fees. Here, I'll break down every possible ACT registration cost and score fee.

The good news is that a lot of these fees are unnecessary and avoidable. Read to the end for tips and strategies on saving as much as possible on the ACT. 

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Beware of These 16 Worst College Majors

Posted by Francesca Fulciniti | Aug 28, 2019 9:00:00 AM

College Info

One of the biggest decisions you’ll have to make while you’re in college (or even before you begin) is what to major in. When you choose a major, you might primarily think about your academic interests or long-term career goals. But perhaps you’re concerned about more practical matters, such as employment and earnings opportunities.

If you want to scope out majors that'll make it more difficult for you to be professionally successful in the long run, you’ve come to the right place. Here, I’ll lay out what makes a major "bad" before listing the worst college majors in a variety of categories (including worst-paying majors, majors with the highest unemployment rates, and lowest-value majors). Keep in mind, however, that these can still be great subjects to study.

Already majoring in one of the subjects on this list or planning to in the future? Don’t worry—that doesn’t mean you’re doomed to professional failure. At the end, I’ll list tips and strategies for success if you’ve decided to pursue one of the majors on these lists.

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The 13 Best Fashion Schools in the US

Posted by Francesca Fulciniti | Aug 26, 2019 10:00:00 PM

College Info

Thinking about entering the fashion industry? You’re in for a fun, challenging career path. If you want to be well-prepared to enter any area of fashion - ether it’s the design side or the business side - an education at a well-reputed school will definitely be helpful.

Before getting into the list of best fashion schools, I’ll talk a bit about why you might want to attend a fashion school and how I compiled these rankings.

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How to Win the Gates Scholarship

Posted by Francesca Fulciniti | Aug 18, 2019 6:48:00 PM

Financial Aid

 

The Gates Scholarship is a program with a huge impact. Launched in 2017, the program's mission is to give opportunities to outstanding minority students to reach their highest potential.

In this guide, I'll go through all the details of the scholarship and the application protocols. After that, I'll give you expert tips and strategies for putting together the strongest Gates Scholarship application possible. Read on to learn more!

Note: The Gates Scholarship was established in 2017 as a replacement for the Gates Millennium Scholars Program, which reached its goal of 20,000 scholars in 2016.

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The 12 Best Journalism Schools

Posted by Francesca Fulciniti | Aug 11, 2019 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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The 25 Best US Colleges for International Students

Posted by Francesca Fulciniti | Aug 11, 2019 8:30:00 AM

College Info

Each year, nearly one million international students enroll in US undergraduate and graduate programs. There are so many colleges and universities in the US, though, that it can be tough to know where to start, especially if you’re applying from out of the country.

In this post, I’ll lay out some of the best universities for international students. Whether you’re looking for generous financial aid, large international populations, or special international programs, we’ve got you covered.

Finally, I’ll lay out the five most important steps you need to take if you want to go to school in the US, straight from the State Department.

Let’s get started!

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How to Win a Coca Cola Scholarship

Posted by Francesca Fulciniti | Aug 4, 2019 7:00:00 PM

Financial Aid

If you're looking into scholarship programs to help pay for your college education, the famous Coca-Cola scholarships are a good place to start. Why are they famous? Well, the Coca-Cola foundation offers some of the most generous awards out there to graduating high school seniors. They tend to be very competitive, so if you want a shot at the scholarship, you should learn as much about them as you possibly can. 

In this post, I'll talk about some of the logistical concerns you might have about the scholarship— things like deadlines and eligibility requirements. But more importantly, I'll also offer helpful tips and strategies to give your application the boost it needs. Read on to optimize your chances of winning one of these competitive scholarships!

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SAT Fees and Registration: What's the Total Cost of the SAT?

Posted by Francesca Fulciniti | Jun 23, 2019 10:00:00 PM

SAT Logistics

Just like many parts of the college application process, taking the SAT (and even using your SAT scores) comes with an assortment of fees. Here, I'll break down every possible SAT registration cost and score fee. Then, I'll go over strategies for saving as much money as possible on the SAT.

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The 19 Best Colleges for Students With Learning Disabilities

Posted by Francesca Fulciniti | Jun 9, 2019 11:00:00 AM

College Info

Figuring out which colleges you’re interested in is arguably the most difficult part of the college application process. There’s so much information to sift through—how could brief campus visits and informational brochures really tell you where you’ll be most successful?

This process is even harder for students with learning disabilities. You want to make sure there are programs in place to help you be the best you can be no matter where you go to school.

If you want to apply to colleges for students with learning disabilities, this article is a great place to start your college search. I'll start off by talking about what these specialty programs have to offer before getting to the rankings. Afterward, I'll discuss the next steps to take if you decide a learning disability program is right for you.

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How to Win a Tylenol Scholarship

Posted by Francesca Fulciniti | May 19, 2019 4:30:00 PM

Financial Aid

If you're planning on pursuing an education or career in health care, you should definitely check out the Tylenol Future Care Scholarship, a merit-based award meant for undergraduate and graduate students who are enrolled in any of a wide variety of health-care programs, including public health, health education, med school, nursing, and even pharmaceuticals. 

I'll talk about the eligibility requirements and the application process first before discussing tips and strategies you can use to optimize your chances of winning a Future Care Scholarship. 

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How to Pay for College Without Parents' Help

Posted by Francesca Fulciniti | May 12, 2019 9:00:00 PM

Financial Aid

Paying for school is daunting enough when you have the financial support of your family. But for students whose parents can't or won't contribute to expenses, figuring out how to pay for college on your own becomes a whole different challenge.

In this guide, I'll lay out everything you need to consider about how to pay for college without parents and all the steps you need to take.

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