SAT / ACT Prep Online Guides and Tips

Complete Guide: Colleges Not Requiring SAT Scores

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Sep 15, 2019 6:00:00 PM

SAT General Info, College Admissions

Not all admissions processes are created equal. One major point of difference among colleges these days is how admissions officers consider your SAT scores. More and more schools are de-emphasizing SAT scores as part of your application with test-optional and test-flexible policies. One college has even eliminated SAT scores completely!

There are now more than 1,000 accredited, bachelor-degree granting institutions that have changed their approaches to standardized test scores. Keep in mind that the majority of colleges, especially the more prestigious schools, do still require (and strongly consider) SAT scores.

Let’s take a look at the different score policies and the schools that no longer require applicants to submit their SAT scores for admission.

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What's a Good PSAT Score for 2019?

Posted by Hannah Muniz | Sep 13, 2019 2:00:00 PM

PSAT Info and Strategies

Taking the 2019 PSAT? Then you’ll want to have a decent grasp of what a good PSAT score for 2019 is. There are three main ways you can define good 2019 PSAT scores: (1) using percentiles, (2) using National Merit score cutoffs, and (3) based on the SAT scores you’ll need for colleges.

In this guide, we start by going over how PSAT scoring works and the most important information you'll see on your PSAT score report, from scores and subscores to percentiles. Then, we dive into our three definitions of what good 2019 PSAT scores are.

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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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The Best Controversial Topics for Debates and Essays

Posted by Ashley Robinson | Sep 11, 2019 12:00:00 PM

General Education

Controversial topics are a good choice for an essay or debate because they immediately draw in the reader or listener. The adage that “controversy sells” is so rooted in society that even the rapper Chamillionaire named his second album after it! Controversial issues are also a good topic because it’s easier to write a strong thesis and find sources to back up your argument. After all, when something is controversial, everybody wants to have their say over it. 

However, it’s also important that you address controversial issues with sensitivity and care. Because controversial topics tend to raise emotions, you must walk a thin line between opinion and fact in order to build trust between you and your reader/listener.

In this article, we’re going to give you the best controversial topics you can use for essays and debates—and we’ll explain the controversies for you, too! We’ll also discuss when to use controversial topics, the pros and cons of choosing a controversial issue, and tips for making sure you’re treating a controversial topic with sensitivity and respect. 

That’s a lot to cover, so let’s get started! 


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Complex Sentences: A Crash Course With Examples

Posted by Ashley Robinson | Sep 10, 2019 3:00:00 PM

General Education

What makes someone a “good” writer? While there are lots of answers to that question, one thing most great writers do is vary their sentence structure. They mix long, flowing sentences with short, powerful ones to communicate their points. 

But don’t worry: you can learn to do this, too! It starts with understanding different types of sentences and their structures. One type of sentence you’ve probably heard of that can add variety and depth to your writing is a complex sentence. But what are complex sentences, exactly? 

We’re here to help you understand exactly what complex sentences are and why they’re important by covering the following in this article: 

  • Answering the question, “What is a complex sentence?”
  • Discussing when to use complex sentences
  • Reviewing the different parts of complex sentences 
  • Explaining the difference between complex sentences, compound sentences, and compound-complex sentences 

Ready to become a complex sentence wizard? Then let's get started!



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What Is a Compound Sentence? Types and Examples

Posted by Christine Sarikas | Sep 9, 2019 12:00:00 PM

General Education

What is a compound sentence? How does it differ from a complex sentence? And there are compound-complex sentences, too? Don’t worry, we’ll help you keep them all straight! Read this guide to learn what a compound sentence is, what the different types of compound sentences are, what compound sentence examples look like, and what other sentence types you should know.

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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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How to Write Stellar Stanford Essays: 3 Expert Tips

Posted by Hayley Milliman | Sep 8, 2019 7:00:00 PM

College Essays

Are you hoping to be one of the less than 5% of students admitted to Stanford this year? If so, you’ll need to write some amazing essays as part of your application.

In this article, we’ll outline the different types of essays you need to write for your Stanford University application and teach you how to write an essay that will help you stand out from the thousands of other applicants.

 

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How to Win a National Merit Scholarship

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Sep 8, 2019 6:52:00 PM

PSAT Info and Strategies, College Admissions

Being named a Scholar is the highest academic recognition you can achieve from the National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC). It is a national distinction that puts you at the pinnacle of academic achievement.

To become a Scholar, you need to first become a Finalist. But not all Finalists win scholarships: only about 8,000 of 15,000 students win this award. In this article, we’ll talk about what scholarships are available through the NMSC and what you need to do to get one.

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Should I Go to One of the Big 10 Schools?

Posted by Justin Berkman | Sep 8, 2019 6:30:00 PM

College Info

 

The Big Ten is one of the most prestigious intercollegiate athletic conferences in the country. It has 14 member schools, most of which are located in the Midwest. While they’re all unique, Big 10 schools have many commonalities and are known for emphasizing both athletics and academics.

In this article, I’ll do the following:

  • Give you the names of all of the Big Ten universities and provide information about each school
  • Describe the attributes of Big Ten colleges
  • Detail possible advantages and disadvantages of attending a Big Ten school
  • Explain how to decide if you should attend one of the Big Ten schools
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5 Tips to Write an Excellent UCF Application Essay

Posted by Melissa Brinks | Sep 8, 2019 4:00:00 PM

College Essays

The University of Central Florida, commonly known as UCF, is one of the largest colleges in the United States. Over 50,000 students are enrolled at UCF, but that doesn't mean it's super easy to get in—UCF has an acceptance rate of 49.9 percent, meaning they accept just under half of students who apply.

To set yourself apart from the crowd, you'll want to write a stellar UCF application essay. Don't think that the fact that these essays are optional means they're not important; they're an additional opportunity to show why you'll be a great addition to the student body!

In this guide, we'll cover all the details of the UCF essay prompts, including how to answer them, what UCF is looking for, and a step-by-step guide to make your essay as strong as it can be.

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Every IB Math Past Paper Available: Free and Official

Posted by Dora Seigel | Sep 8, 2019 3:00:00 PM

International Baccalaureate (IB)

No matter which IB Math you take, the test can be stressful. For many students, achieving a 6 or better is necessary to get you out of college math requirements. Even if you are not aiming for a 6 or above, you need to pass to better your chances of getting your IB Diploma. You have spent years studying for this moment. To ensure you are prepared, I highly recommend sitting for at least one practice test using IB Math past papers.

In this article, I will let you know where you can find free and paid IB Math practice materials for Mathematical Studies SL, Mathematics SL, Mathematics HL, and Further Mathematics HL. Also, I will give you advice on how to get the most out of your practice so you can hit your target score on test day.

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Coalition vs Common App: Which Should You Use?

Posted by Hannah Muniz | Sep 8, 2019 2:00:00 PM

College Admissions, College Info

When it comes to college applications, you have a few options for how you can apply. Two of these are the Common Application (or Common App) and the Coalition Application (or Coalition App).

In this extensive guide to the Coalition vs Common App, we’ll go over the major features of the two application systems and take a look at their biggest pros and cons. We’ll then review the colleges that don’t accept either application system, and offer you tips on whether you should choose the Coalition or Common App.

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3 Top Tips for a Stand-Out Cornell Essay

Posted by Hayley Milliman | Sep 8, 2019 1:00:00 PM

College Essays

In 2019, Cornell admitted just 10.6% of their total applicant pool. In order to be one of the students who gets accepted, you need to write amazing Cornell essays as part of your Cornell University application.

In this article, we’ll outline the different types of essays you need to write for your Cornell University application and teach you how to write a Cornell supplement essay that will help you stand out from the thousands of other applicants.

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4 Tips for Writing Perfect USC Essays

Posted by Ashley Robinson | Sep 8, 2019 12:00:00 PM

College Essays

So you have your heart set on going to the University of Southern California. That's great—it's one of the best schools in the country! Unfortunately, that makes it tough to get into: only 11% of applicants are admitted each year.

To apply, USC requires you to submit both the Common Application and a school-specific writing supplement designed to "discover your individual story." But what does that mean? And how can you make your USC essays stand out from the crowd?

We've got you covered. This guide will teach you everything you need to know to write an outstanding USC Writing Supplement.

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