Posts tagged ‘Test preparation’

October 17, 2014

The booming test prep industry offers questionable value

by Grace


…The number of test prep centers in the U.S. more than doubled to 11,000 from 1998 to 2012, the last year for which Census data are available.

There’s a multibillion-dollar market for tutoring services in the U.S., with franchises such as Kumon and big chains including Kaplan and Princeton Review. The test prep industry promises to help students score better on everything from the SAT to Advanced Placement courses to med school entrance exams.

Strictly speaking, Kumon and similar centers do not focus on test preparation.

Washington DC, New Jersey, Hawaii, New York, and California lead in locations with the highest concentrations of tutoring establishments, as shown by the chart on the right.

All the money and effort devoted to commercial test preparation seems to have a relatively low payout.

… Contrary to the claims made by many test preparation providers of large increases of 100 points or more on the SAT, research suggests that average gains are more in the neighborhood of 30 points….


Patrick Clark, “The Test Prep Industry Is Booming”,, October 08, 2014.

February 4, 2012

Want a free copy of the PWN the SAT Math Guide?

by Grace

I’m reposting this from PWN the SAT because this SAT guide comes highly recommended and because I want a chance for a free copy!  You should post or link it, too.

The whole reason I started PWN the SAT is that I think good, solid test prep advice should be available to everyone, not just people who have access to top-notch tutors or prep courses. That’s why the content on my sites will always be free, and although I am selling a book now (I need to pay my rent, you know) I want to give you a chance to get your hands on it for free, too.

Here’s the deal:

  1. You reblog this post. (Or copy/paste THE WHOLE POST onto your non-Tumblr blog, or put a link to this contest on your favorite social network.)
  2. You fill out this form.
  3. For every 10 books that sell, I choose 1 random person from the list, email them to make sure they still want a book and confirm their shipping address, and send them a free copy.


If you have no idea what the PWN the SAT Math Guide is or why you’d want it, the book’s Amazon page allows you to browse through and see what it’s about.


Well, it’d be nice to get the word out, but I don’t exactly have a marketing budget. This is a promotion that pays for itself, so I know I’ll always be able to afford to ship out the prizes.

And I’ve heard from a bunch of people that they want my book but can’t afford it.

I feel like this one stone, if it catches on, can kill both birds. You help me get the word out, and I give you free stuff.


  • This is only available to USA residents, because I don’t really know how to ship internationally. Sorry.
  • Only one entry per person.
  • I’ll check to make sure your post is still up before I contact you to tell you you’ve won, so you can’t just make a post and then delete it.
  • This is important: PLEASE don’t spam. That means don’t put this where you don’t have permission to put it. Don’t put it on message boards that forbid advertising. Don’t put it ANYWHERE it won’t be welcome. If you have any doubt about whether you should be posting this, don’t.
  • This promotion will run through the entire month of February, but I might extend it further if it seems to be working well.

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