One size does not fit all for test prep. Most test prep companies give every student a standard set of materials regardless of which sections the student needs the most help with. This is often a waste of time and money. There is no need to spend dozens of hours attending classes and working through thousands of practice problems. We customize and tailor our test prep sessions to students' needs and abilities by carefully assessing a practice test and further observing them during test prep sessions.
FOCUS ON WEAKNESSES
All students have strengths and weaknesses and it is important to focus on weaknesses because lower scores can be raised more easily than higher scores. It's much easier to raise an ACT section score from 20 to a 25 than from 25 to a 30. We focus most on the lowest scores until a new weakness emerges, then we tackle that section.
That said, if a student hits a wall, we move on to another section. For example, a student might begin to plateau in reading comprehension around a score of 25 on the ACT and getting a 27 would require a lot more work. Instead of spending a lot of time moving up 2 points in that section, we'll work on another section that has more potential for quick improvement, like bumping a 28 to a 30 in math.
Because good strategy leads to bigger score improvement than content knowledge, we focus on strategy coaching first. Most students are crunched for time on the exam and without good strategy students are often scrambling to bubble in random answers during the last minutes of the exam. With good coaching that never happens.
PATTERN RECOGNITION COACHING
It is important to work practice problems, analyze incorrect answers, identify what went wrong, and learn how to recognize that type of problem next time. We call this pattern recognition coaching. The ACT and SAT have certain kinds of problems that show up every time. We build students' awareness of these patterns and develop their arsenal of weapons to identify and solve each problem type.
Finally, content coaching is required to achieve top scores. If a student has skill or knowledge gaps in math, reading, english, or reasoning, it will result in a lower score plateau. With enough time, we can assess and fill in those gaps.