SAT / ACT Prep Online Guides and Tips

Rebecca Safier

Rebecca graduated with her Master's in Adolescent Counseling from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. She has years of teaching and college counseling experience and is passionate about helping students achieve their goals and improve their well-being. She graduated magna cum laude from Tufts University and scored in the 99th percentile on the SAT.

Recent Posts

Should I Waive My Right to Review Recommendation Letters?

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Jan 18, 2020 9:00:00 AM

Letters of Recommendation

Short answer: yes. Long answer: there's no need to worry about checking "yes" and waiving your right to see your letters of recommendation on the FERPA waiver section of your college applications.

This article will explain exactly what FERPA is, why you're being asked to waive it, and how it impacts your letters of recommendations. To be honest, the FERPA waiver will probably be the easiest part of filling out your college applications!

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What's Tested on the SAT Math Section? Topics and Practice

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Jan 17, 2020 12:00:00 PM

SAT General Info

Your first step in preparing for the math section of the SAT should be familiarizing yourself with exactly what's on it. Whatever math class you're taking in school, you should be able to conquer the SAT math topics with the right approach to test prep. Let's start this guide by reviewing the overall format of the math section of the SAT.

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Celebrity SAT Scores (Kesha, Bill Gates, and more)

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Jan 17, 2020 11:55:00 AM

SAT General Info


What do you have in common with Kesha, Bill Gates, Al Gore, and Derek Jeter? They all had to take the SAT when they were in high school, just like you!

However you feel about the SAT, it's a landmark in the lives of many American students (and lots of international ones, too). Taking the SAT is an experience that many of you will share and remember well for the rest of your lives. Let's check out some SAT scores of the rich and famous—and talk about how you can achieve some Kesha-worthy scores of your own.

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118 Great Questions to Ask on a College Tour

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Jan 16, 2020 5:00:00 PM

College Admissions

Touring your prospective colleges is a great opportunity to learn from the people who study, work, and teach on campus. By keeping your eyes and ears open, you can gain a strong sense of a school and its culture, far beyond the facts and figures on its website.

To make the most of your visits, you should prepare thoughtful questions to ask on a college tour. This guide will provide you with a comprehensive college visit checklist of questions for your tour guide, current students, admissions officers, financial aid officers, and professors. Plus, we'll offer some advice on what not to ask.

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3 Examples of *Excellent* Letters of Recommendation from Counselors

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Jan 11, 2020 3:00:00 PM

Letters of Recommendation

School counselors play a huge role in helping students get into college. Not only do counselors support students in laying the groundwork for their applications through class selection and extracurricular involvement, but they also provide them with the very important counselor letter of recommendation.

Whether you're writing a letter yourself or getting one for your application, letter of recommendation examples can help you see why an effective letter is effective. In this guide, we've written 3 strong recommendation letter examples for you to use for inspiration.

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9 Sample Excellent Recommendation Letters for Your Job

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Jan 11, 2020 2:00:00 PM

Letters of Recommendation

Anyone who's applied for a job knows how important recommendation letters can be to getting hired. While you've probably asked for a reference letter in the past, you may be less familiar with writing one. If someone asks you for a reference, how can you produce a great letter that will help your employee, colleague, or friend get hired?

To help you through the writing process, we're providing nine samples of effective letters of recommendation (scroll down to skip to the samples!). By reading through these examples, you'll gain a clear understanding of how to structure your own letters.

Before getting to the free recommendation letter samples, let's briefly review the role that reference letters play in the hiring process. Why are they important, and what makes some stand out over others?

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Sample Character Reference Letter for a Friend

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Jan 11, 2020 10:00:00 AM

Letters of Recommendation

This final recommendation letter example represents a character reference. A character reference might come from a friend, neighbor, or even relative. It tends to be more personal than professional and speaks to the subject's personality and character.

In this guide, we'll explain what character references letters are and when they are needed, as well as how to write one and what to include in your letter. We also include a sample character reference letter so you can see what a complete one looks like, and we end with tips to help you write your own letter of recommendation for a friend.

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How to Ask For a Letter of Recommendation: Complete Guide

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Jan 11, 2020 9:00:00 AM

Letters of Recommendation

No groveling necessary.

Asking someone to write you a letter of recommendation can feel almost as daunting as asking that special someone out to a movie. You're putting yourself out there, just hoping they like you back enough to say yes! Luckily, most of your teachers are well accustomed to writing letters of recommendation for students and are glad to support you in your academic goals.

Plus, who wouldn't want to recommend you for college? You're great.

To ensure your request goes as smoothly as possible, you should be thoughtful about who and how you ask. This guide will go over the steps on how to request a recommendation letter for your college applications successfully (though this guide works equally well for applications for graduate school and jobs). First, let's briefly go over what you need to know before making your request.

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Direct Manager's Letter of Recommendation for an Employee

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Jan 11, 2020 8:00:00 AM

Letters of Recommendation

What does a good recommendation letter look like? Below you'll find a sample letter written by a direct manager for an employee who works in software sales. If you're responsible for managing or leading a team, chances are you'll be called upon to write similar letters.

Read on to see how this manager endorses one member of his sales team, and then check out the breakdown of what this letter does well.

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Choose Your SAT / ACT Test Dates: When's a Good Time for You?

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Jan 5, 2020 1:00:00 PM

SAT Strategies, ACT Strategies

"I have no idea what to expect" is not a sentence you want running through your mind on your way to take the SAT or ACT. If you take control of your test prep and schedule, then you shouldn't have any surprises on test day.

Besides studying, part of your preparation should be strategically planning out your SAT/ACT test dates. Instead of closing your eyes and pointing randomly at a calendar, you can ask yourself some key questions to figure out when the best SAT/ACT test dates are for you.

The first question that every student should ask herself, of course, is, When are my college deadlines?

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When Do SAT Subject Test Scores Come Out?

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Dec 29, 2019 12:00:00 PM

SAT Subject Tests

After you take the SAT Subject Tests, you probably want to find out your results right away. You'll have to be a little patient, though, as you might need to wait between two and six weeks to get your SAT Subject Test scores.

We've compiled the exact score delivery dates below. We also offer tips on how to track down your scores and what to do after you get them. Read on to find out just when you'll get your SAT Subject Test scores.

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What's a Good PSAT Score for a Sophomore?

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Dec 22, 2019 4:30:00 PM

SAT/ACT Score Target, PSAT Info and Strategies

You wouldn't go for your driver's license test before ever getting behind the wheel, right? In reality, you'd practice your three-point turns and parallel parking first so you're ready and know what to expect when the real test comes.

Just as you suspected, this scenario's an analogy for the PSAT. Rather than sitting for it junior year without a practice run, you can improve your performance if you've already taken it in 10th grade. Taking the PSAT as a sophomore is a great, low-pressure way to familiarize yourself with the test, gauge your level, and figure out where you need to improve.

With this in mind, we'll look at what PSAT scores are good for sophomores and how to improve them even more for junior year. But first, let's consider how the PSAT is scored.

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New 2019 PSAT Percentiles and Selection Index

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Dec 22, 2019 4:00:00 PM

PSAT Info and Strategies

Your PSAT score report will show you a myriad of scores, including your total score, section scores, subscores, percentiles, and Selection Index (SI). This guide will focus on the last two pieces of data: your PSAT score percentiles and Selection Index.

Because it's important to understand how the other scores in your report relate to your PSAT percentiles and Selection Index, we'll start with a quick review of terms. If you're one of many students or parents looking for directions out of the complex maze that is the PSAT score report, read on to have the path illuminated!

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What's a Good PSAT Score for a Junior?

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Dec 22, 2019 4:00:00 PM

PSAT Info and Strategies

The PSAT is an important test on the road to college. Your scores predict how you'll do on the SAT. Plus, top scorers can earn distinctions and scholarships from the National Merit Scholarship Corporation.

So how do you know whether your PSAT scores are good? While what counts as a good score varies depending on your personal goals, we can give a more objective answer to this question by considering PSAT score percentiles. But first, let's review how the PSAT is scored.

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SAT Subject Test Dates 2020: When Should You Take Them?

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Dec 22, 2019 11:13:00 AM

SAT Subject Tests

When are you planning to take the SAT Subject Tests? If you answered, "I don't know," you're not alone! It's hard to know when the best time is to fit in the Subject Tests with the general SAT, your schoolwork, and everything else you've got going on.

Let's take a look at when the SAT Subject Tests are offered in 2020 and when the best dates are for you to take them. As long as you have a plan, you'll be able to balance these tests with all the other things you're up to in your busy life.

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